When Russborough was left to the Irish public in 1978, Sir Alfred and Lady Beit also left the gift of learning, art, and architecture for everyone to enjoy. Today, we delight in subtle traces of a bygone world thanks to their generosity.
The guided tour of the house includes 50 paintings and drawings in the world-famous Beit Collection and the Milltown Collection. Accumulated for nearly 300 years, the plasterwork, furnishings, and furniture make Russborough the finest great house open to the public in Ireland today. This tour is an excellent way for visitors to discover Irish architecture, art, and interior design along with collecting and sociability from the 1740s.
There is also information about the house being constructed by wealthy Dublin brewer Joseph Leeson, the first Earl of Milltown, right up to the present day. Although Sir Alfred and Lady Beit donated much of their priceless art collection to the National Gallery of Ireland in 1986, the collection that remains at Russborough is equally precious. More info here www.russborough.ie/tours
The house tour will be followed by lunch in Brambles Tea Rooms at Russborough House and after this there will be a tour of the Walled Garden.
Russborough’s 18th century walled garden is currently being restored by volunteers from the Royal Horticultural Society of Ireland (RHSI). The impressive restoration work includes reinstating the garden paths to their original layout and dimensions along with repairs to the surrounding brick and stone walls using traditional techniques, replanting of the hornbeam hedge, and restoring the curvilinear glasshouse. The once overgrown vegetable garden is again an area of productivity and work is being carried out to restore the Pleasure Garden.
Time will be given after each tour for the Friends to explore and take in all the other parts of Russborough at their leisure, such as the Birds of Prey Centre (NB. there is an entrance fee for this) or Russborough’s surrounding parklands. A coach will be organised to bring the Friends to and from Russborough House (departing from Heuston Station) if they are traveling from Dublin.
There is a fee of €50 per person, for this RHA Friends’ outing – tours, lunch and coach are included in the price. Please note this figure could possibly change depending on number of places booked but should not vary significantly.
Booking is essential for all Friends events. To book a place on this trip please email Michelle Considine, Friends Co-ordinator at firstname.lastname@example.org by replying to this email.