Ballycarrane House, Thurles

Ballycarrane House, Thurles

Thursday, 23 February 2017

Beatrice Anderson [1887-1979]



A photograph of Bodie Anderson taken at Rathrobin c. 1906-10. Is this Beatrice Anderson, daughter of Gertrude Biddulph?

Wednesday, 22 February 2017

Gertrude Louisa Biddulph [1856-1942]



The second daughter of Francis Marsh Biddulph and Lucy Bickerstaffe, Gertrude Louisa Biddulph married George Carpenter Anderson, a British subject born in India, in 1879 in the pretty local church of Killoughey.
Marriages: Anderson and Biddulph - Feb 25, at Killoughey Church, George Carpenter, youngest son of the late Captain Anderson, 34th Regiment Madras Native Infantry, to Gertrude, daughter of the late Franc Biddulph, Esq., of Rathrobbin, Tullamore, King's County. [Freemans Journal, Wed., Mar 05, 1879].
They lived in ‘The Cottage,’ Oakford, Devon and had five children, two sons, George Biddulph and Francis Henry Middleton, and three daughters, Ethel Gertrude, Evelyn Norah, and Beatrice Florence.  A sixth child and third son died as an infant in 1888. George Carpenter Anderson had died in 1887.
Gertrude married Nevil Pottow Cadell, M.D., in 1893 in Tiverton, Devon. They had one son, Assheton Biddulph Cadell, who died in Flanders in 1916, aged 21, and is buried in Lijssenthoek Military Cemetery, Flanders, Belgium.
Gertrude died in 1945.
Mrs. Gertrude Louisa Cadell, Foxlease, Keymer Hassocks, Sussex, daughter of Francis Biddulph, Rathrobin, Offaly, £6,148 gross, with net personalty £6,114 (Britain).(Irish Wills. The Irish Times, Wednesday June 12, 1946).
Nevil Pottow Cadell died in 1949.

Tuesday, 21 February 2017

Tintern Abbey, Salt Mills, County Wexford


Franc Digby Biddulph [1853-1895]



The youngest son of Francis Marsh Biddulph and Lucy Bickerstaffe, Franc Digby Biddulph appears by all accounts to have been the black sheep of the family.
He was a Captain in the 3rd Middlesex Militia and married Louisa Maria Susannah Rossborough-Colclough of Tintern Abbey, New Ross, County Wexford, a wealthy heiress, on the 15th September 1885. He assumed the surname and arms of the Colclough family by Royal Letters Patent in 1886.

Marriages: September 15, Franc Digby Biddulph, late Captain 3rd Middlesex Militia, youngest son of the late Francis Wellesley Marsh Biddulph,  Rathrobbie[sic], Tullamore, to Louisa Rossborough Colclough, eldest daughter of the late Rossborough Colclough, Tintern Abbey, County Wexford. [Nenagh Guardian, Sat., September 19, 1885].
 
Stories about him are rife, how he married Louisa at midnight, how he shut her up in a room for five years after the birth of her daughter. He was also rumoured to have been married under a false name in England before his marriage to Louisa, but this has never been proved. However all does not seem to be bad – Franc Digby Biddulph was a benevolent landlord and a number of newspaper articles testify to this.
They had two children. Caesar Franc Thomas Bickerstaffe Plantagenet Colclough., born 1886, who died an infant in 1888, and Lucy Wilmot Maria Susanna Colclough, who was generally called May in 1890.
Franc Digby Biddulph died on the 13th of July 1895. Louisa died on the 29th of January 1912.

The history of Tintern Abbey is extremely interesting. It was founded in 1203 by the Earl of Pembroke, William Marshall, and known as ‘Tintern de Voto’, or Tintern of the Vow, after the vow William Marshall is believed to have uttered when his boat was caught in a storm. John Bower described the scene graphically in his poem Tintern de Voto.
Black midnight storm around the royal bark had gathered
Of Pembroke and fair Isabel, his queen.
Mastless! A wreck unhelmed!
St. David’s frowning head
And Carnsore’s cliffs between
Rous’d from his blissful dream,
Down knelt Earl Mareshal, then
Around knelt wife and men,
And, in the lightning’s glare,
He prayed this heartfelt prayer.

God, full of mercy, pow’r and might,
Save, or we perish in tempest tonight,
For His sake who uttered the glad words to save
His ship and servants on Galilee’s wave,
An altar of gold in an abbey of stone;
An abbey, and altar, a church and a shrine,
This heart’s grateful off’ring to mercy divine.

Still was the storm,
The ship was at rest,
As a baby asleep on a fond mother’s breast;
And the bark, wreck redeem’d, in the morning’s light lay,
Tide drifted, God guided,
By the sands of St Kearns in Bannow’s fair bay.
Built he the shrine
Raised up the altar to mercy divine.

Anthony Colclough acquired Tintern Abbey in 1575 by a Royal grant from Elizabeth I, and proceeded to rebuild the Abbey into a house, which would now be considered an act of vandalism. Lucy Colclough Biddulph bequeathed Tintern Abbey to the State. I was fortunate to meet Lucy [May] Colclough Biddulph in Salt Mills in the 1970s.  There was no doubt that she was a Biddulph, she looked so like my grandmother, Amy Biddulph, they could have been sisters!
 The Abbey has now been partially restored and has been opened to the public:
http://www.heritageireland.ie/en/south-east/tinternabbey/

Sunday, 19 February 2017

Assheton Biddulph and Moneyguyneen, Kinnitty, County Offaly





Assheton Biddulph [1850-1916] of Moneyguyneen, Kinnitty, County Offaly



Born in 1850, Assheton was the second surviving son of Francis Biddulph of Rathrobin, and Lucy Bickerstaffe.
Mr. Biddulph entered the 57th Regiment as Ensign in 1869, and retired four years later. (Obit. Irish Times Thur., Jan 20, 1916).
He married Florence Caroline Boothby in 1880, the youngest daughter of the Reverend Cunningham Boothby, Holwell Vicarage, Oxfordshire, and Jane Tod. They lived in Moneyguyneen, Kinnitty, County Offaly. Assheton’s income came from the land and from dividends. They had five children, one son, Robert, who died from rheumatic fever in 1916 having served at the front for ten months, and four daughters. His son in law, John Goold-Adams, husband of his daughter Ierne, died at Ypres in 1915. His eldest daughter, Kathleen, had eloped and married Shaen Magan in 1906, against her father’s wishes. Assheton never saw his daughter again. 
Assheton’s wife Florence played her part in the social life of the area.
BALL IN BIRR
A "small and early" ball was given in Oxmantown Hall on Tuesday evening by Mrs. T. A. Drought, of Lettybrook, and Mrs. Assheton Biddulph, of Moneyguineen. Invitations were issued to as many as the hall could comfortably hold, and all were accepted. The attendance of young people was a feature of the social event, which passed off in the most pleasing manner. The afternoon tea and other arrangements were faultless, and the music conducted by a local gentleman of known skill and taste, gave the greatest satisfaction to competent judges
(Midland Tribune January 9th 1897).
According to Maurice O’Connor Morris  in his book ‘Memini, or Reminiscences of Irish Life’  Assheton Biddulph was  ‘one who knew as much as most men about horses of all sorts, hounds, hunting, racing, &c; in fact, he was an encyclopedia of sport and could ride to perfection.’
But Florence too could match her husband in her enthusiasm for hunting.
In connection with the meet of the Ormond and King’s County Hunt at Harristown on Friday, the wife of the MFH, Mrs Assheton Biddulph, starting from Rockforest, Roscrea, at 9 am, joined the meet at seven miles distant at 11.o’clock, was in the front in the subsequent six hours’ hunting, and then crossed the Slieve Bloom Mountains, reaching her home at Kinnetty at 8 pm, having been in the saddle for over ten hours, and covering over 55 Irish miles. In November last, this lady, attending a similar meet, rode 60 Irish miles in ten hours with changed horses on both occasions. [Kerry Weekly reporter, Sat, Feb 01, 1896]
Assheton played a large part in the sporting life of the county and wider area, not only as Master of Foxhounds but was also instrumental in introducing a Foxhound Show to the Clonmel Horse Show in 1895.
The season 1894-5 may be said to have already commenced with the cubs. Mr. Assheton Biddulph, the popular Master, along with Mrs Biddulph, who accompanies him on all occasions and rides to the finish, got his beauties together at Lacca, Queen’s County, on Wednesday 3rsd inst. A good field assembled, although the hour was as early as 7 a.m. A new cover was tried, ad a few hours work resulted in a pair of finds. The cubs worked admirably and pleased the Master immensely. He said he never found them answering so well, as they settled down to the labours of the morning more like two year olds than yearlings. He had two dozen of them ‘walked’ since last season, and this number, after the usual weeding of the old stock, brings the two packs up to their normal strength. [The Irish Times, Tue, October 9, 1894] 
However things did not always run smoothly as the following news clippings demonstrate.
The King's County and Ormond Hunt Club
Resignation of the Master.
"All is not gold that glitters" and "uneasy is the head that wears a crown" are proverbs as true as they are trite. As master of the King's County and Ormond Club Mr. Assheton Biddulph's career has been, to describe it mildly, a very unhappy one. To his kindly disposition and his recognition of popular rights, must be attributed a large share of the success which has characterised hunting in the Ormonds and King's County in recent years. In the memorable days of the Eighties when popular opinion expressed itself so forcibly on the famous Knock against hunting being permitted to follow the hounds, Mr. Biddulph had a very difficult card to play. But he was then dealing with honourable men - men sacrificing their own interests for principle's sake - and when that principle had been satisfied he experienced no further difficulty in hunting the district. It is now apparent that Mr. Biddulph had not half so much to fear from the open and mainly opposition of the people, as he had from the secret machinations of his own "invincibles." Some years ago a section of the Hunt formed a conspiracy for the purpose of extermination Mr. Biddulph as M.F.H., and of replacing him by a needy but more aristocratic scion of the British Garrison in Ireland, and so far has that active section succeeded in "making it hot" for Mr. Biddulph, that he has found it necessary to address the following circular to the members of the hunt -

Moneyguineen, Kinnitty, 31st March, 97.
Dear Sir - As I have just heard that some members of the Ormond and King's County Hunt are dissatisfied with the existing arrangements regarding the hunting of the country, and as I am most anxious (as I have always been) not to in any way jeopardise the interests of sport, I hasten to tender my resignation as M.F.H. of the country which I have now hunted for the past thirteen seasons, and in doing so it is almost unnecessary for me to say that I return my best thanks to my many friends and supporters, and most cordially wish success to whoever may come after me. - Yours very sincerely,
Assheton Biddulph. (Midland Tribune 10th April 1897).

King's County Hunt - First Meeting
On Friday last the first meeting of the King's County Hunt took place in the Charleville Arms Hotel, Tullamore, in one of the rooms which had been kindly placed at the disposal of the hunt by the proprietor, Mr. James Hayes.
Amongst those present in addition to Mr. Biddulph were:-
Captain Daly, High Sheriff of the county; Major Hall, Colonel Biddulph, Dr. J. P. Kennedy, James Hayes, George Matthews, W. A. Going, William Murphy, Joseph Going, J. Davis, Dr. A. J. O'Grady, A. B. Ramsbottom, G. M. S. Enraght-Moony, J. P.; R. J. Robinson, C. J. P. Banon, Richard Bull, sub-sheriff; Michael Kinsella, W. J. Kinsella, A. R. McMullen, W. R. Power, W. H. Harvey, V. S.; T. S. Elcoate, P. Richardson, T. J. Lalor, T. R. Elcoate, P. Richardson, T. J. Lalor, T. R. Tarleton, William Adams, John Moran, James McBryde.
Mr. T. R. Garvey wrote:-"I am very glad the hunting business has been so peaceably and I trust, happily settled. Until I got your letter I never thought there could be a doubt as to what the Ormond country meant in the resolution, viz - The old Ormond country which took in all the King's County south of the Brosna, and that the 'alternate' ground could only refer to the country between the Camcor and Brosna. Not being a hunting man I am unable to say how the 'alternate' plan will work, but from an outside point of view I should say its success depended on the good will and good feeling of the respective masters.
Mr. Biddulph said that the hunt having undergone a change he thought the first thing was to christen it. They started under the name of the King's County Hunt in 1830, and he thought that would be a good name for it now (hear, hear). (Midland Tribune 29th May 1897).

Assheton Biddulph died on the 16th January 1916, in Bath, of heart failure. He is buried at Killoughey. His widow, Florence,  died in 1942. She is buried at Warnham St. Margaret Churchyard, Warnham, Horsham District, West Sussex, England.
BIDDULPH - September 2, 1942 at her residence, Pan's Garden, Warnham, Sussex, Florence Caroline, widow of the late Assheton Biddulph, M.F.H., of Moneyguyneen, Kinnity, King's County, in her 85th year. (The Irish Times, Saturday, September 5th, 1942).

Monday, 13 February 2017

Vera Biddulph [nee Flower] with dog, Bodie Anderson and Marion Biddulph [nee Warburton]


Middleton Westenra Biddulph [1849-1926] of Rathrobin, King's County


 Middleton Westenra Biddulph, born in 1849, was the eldest surviving son of Francis Biddulph and Lucy Bickerstaffe. Their first son, Francis, born in 1848, only lived for two weeks.
He lived in Rathrobin,King's County, which he inherited from his father. He was D.L., JP, High Sheriff in 1901, and a Lieutenant Colonel of the 5th Northumberland Fusiliers.
On the 21st Oct 1891 he married Vera Josephine Flower in the Church of Saint Luke, Chelsea. Vera was the daughter of Sir William Henry Flower, an eminent zoologist, and Georgina Rosetta Smyth. She was fourteen years younger than Middleton, and the transition from an intellectual milieu in London, to the life of a landed family in King's County, must at times have been difficult.  The marriage was childless.
An article in the Irish Farmers Journal, Feb 19, 1994 describes Vera as  “‘aesthetically beautiful’  with a marvellous figure, who wore lovely clothes and never smiled in all her years in Ireland.”  Clearly this last comment was not true, as can be seen in a family photograph of Vera, taken at Rathrobin. Vera is holding the dog. With her are Bodie Anderson and Marion Biddulph [nee Warburton].
The writer continued “During her days at Rathrobin she endeavoured to create in the house and the garden, and by her social conventions a bit of ‘old England.’”
Middleton loved the place, and rebuilt Rathrobin, employing Sir Thomas Drew as architect.

[Middleton Westenra Biddulph] '...demolished the old Rathrobin mansion house and built the house which today crumbles into ruin. The Lieutenant Colonel employed the architect Sir Thomas Drew to design the new Rathrobin House. Drew was the consulting architect on both St. Patrick's Cathedral and Christ Church Cathedral in Dublin and designed St. Anne's Cathedral in Belfast.  He was later President of the Royal Instiute of the Architects of Ireland, the Royal Society of Antiquaries of Ireland, the Royal Hibernian Academy, and also held the chair in architecture at the National University of Ireland. The new house was experimentally constructed by Drew in massed concrete, making it of both architectural and technical interest. Rathrobin was designed in a Tudor Revival style, three storeys high, with numerous gables and ball finials. Windows featured cut limestone surrounds and limestone mullions and transforms. The entrance to the house was by a pedimented single-storey porch. An outbuilding incorporated a rectangular hood moulding dating from the original Molloy castle.' [1]
The 1901 Census reveals details of the house and its occupants. Along with Middleton and his wife Vera, there was a large staff employed to maintain the house, including a butler, a coachman, a cook, two house maids, a laundry maid and a kitchen maid. The house had 21 rooms.
By 1923 Middleton had left Rathrobin due to ill health and was living in London. Rathrobin was burned on the 25th April 1923.
This architecturally innovative house is now in ruins. The following inscription was still visible  in the 1970s.
Rathrobin House built by Nicholas son of John 3rd son of Francis Biddulph of Biddulph Staff in the year 1694 restored by his direct descendant Midleton W. Biddulph son of Francis Y(?) Biddulph in the year 1898.

Middleton died in London on the 19th May 1926. He was 77 years old.
BIDDULPH - May 19, 1926, at 7 Carlyle (Mansions?) Cheyne Walk, London, Lieutenant-Colonel Midleton Westenra Biddulph,D.L. (Late Northumberland Fusiliers), of Rathrobin, Tullamore, King's County. (The Irish Times, Thursday, May 13, 1926).
Middleton's grave can be found  in the cemetery at Black Lion church, Killoughey. He is not buried there. 
 'After Rathrobin was burned he refused to allow his ashes to be interred in the grave, and they were scattered in the Cotswolds.' [Rathrobin House: a portrait of Killoughey's past [a collection of Middleton's photographs] available from the Offaly Historical and Archaeological Society - the Magan Collection].
Vera died in London, in 1938.
Biddulph - January 28,  1938 (her birthday), at her residence, 61 Hillway, Highgate, Vera Josephine, second daughter of the late Sir William (...) K.C. B., and widow of Colonel Middleton Westenra Biddulph, D. L., of Rathrobin, King's County, Ireland, after many years of suffering, bravely borne. (Irish Times Monday February 7th, 1938).




[1] Abandoned Mansions of Ireland II: More Portraits of Forgotten Stately Homes, [by] Tarquin Blake, Collins Press, 2012., p.223.







Tuesday, 7 February 2017

Katie Labatt


Is this Catherine Constance Labatt [b. 1867], or her mother Catherine Matilda Labatt, nee Biddulph [1846-1874]?

Sunday, 5 February 2017

Main Street, Edenderry, County Offaly


Nicholas Biddulph of Glenkeen, or Glankeen, Borrisoleigh, County Tipperary [1737-1799]



Nicholas  Biddulph was born in 1737, the son of John Biddulph of Stradbally, Queen's County, and an unknown mother.
He married Elizabeth Dempsey, the daughter of Charles Dempsey, in 1759. 


Biddulph, Nicholas, upholder and auctioneer, at the sign of the Royal Field in Aungier Street 1759-1762; Henry Street 1762-1766. Freeman of the City of Dublin as an Upholder of the Service [served apprenticeship to his father-in-law Charles Dempsey], Christmas 1761. [Irish furniture: woodwork and carving in Ireland from the earliest times to the Act of Union, by the Knight of Glin and  James Peill. Yale University Press, 2007Appendix 1. p. 272]
They had four children, Thomas, Elizabeth, Mary and Francis, at least three of whom were baptized in Dublin so it appears that Francis and Elizabeth were living there.
Thomas Biddulph  was born in 1761 and baptised in the Church of Saint Peter and St. Kevin, in Dublin, on the 3rd of April. He became  a Midshipman in the Royal Navy and  drowned in the sinking of the ROYAL GEORGE  in Portsmouth in1782.
Elizabeth Biddulph was born in Dublin in 1764 and baptised in St. Mary’s Church of Ireland. In 1789 she married Jonathon Willington of Castle Willington. After his death in 1791, she married again, on the 9th January 1806,  Robert Waller [2nd Bt.] of Castle Waller, Newport, Co. Tipperary, Ireland
Mary Biddulph was born in 1767 and  also baptized in St. Mary’s Church of Ireland. The family were then living in Henry Street, Dublin.
Francis Biddulph was born in 1770 and married Mary Steele of Eirke, County Kilkenny, in 1800.
After the death of his first wife, Elizabeth, Nicholas married a second time, Hannah Cooke, the daughter of Joseph Cooke, in 1776. They had one daughter, Hanna Maria. She married John Grene of Clonliffe, Co. Dublin and of Cappamurra, Co. Tipperary, in 1797.
Nicholas Biddulph was listed as a distiller in IRISH PROVINCIAL DIRECTORIES, 1788, PROVINCE OF MUNSTER. He died in 1799.
Died. At Burrisoleigh, County Tipperary, Nicholas Biddulph Esq., [Saunders News-letter 18 September 1799].
Hannah died in 1824. Nicholas and Hannah are buried in Glankeen Churchyard.
Gloria in Excel. Deo.  Here lies the body of Nicholas Biddulph who Dep. this life Sept. the 6th 1799 Aged 62 years.  Lord Have Mercy on his Soul, Amen.  Here also lieth the mortal remains of Mrs. Hannah Biddulph otherwise Cooke his wife having attained Her 81st year in the full enjoyment Of  all her faculties with pious Resignation and in humble confidence of a happy Eternity through The Merits of her Redeemer She Departed this life the 20th of August 1824
Perhaps Elizabeth is also  buried here, though it is possible she died in Dublin.

Thursday, 2 February 2017

John's Place, Birr, County Offaly


Francis Marsh Wellesley Biddulph [1802-1868]



The eldest son of Francis Biddulph of Vicarstown and Mary Marsh was born in 1802 and christened Francis Marsh Wellesley Biddulph. The origins of the name Wellesley are unclear.  The Duke of Wellington, Arthur Wellesley, of Dangan Castle, had not yet achieved his later fame. The Peninsular Wars began in 1807 and the Battle of Waterloo did not take place until 1815. The Biddulphs were not at this time a military family, that came later, and his mother’s father, Francis Marsh, was a barrister.
There appears to be, however, a tenuous connection between the Biddulphs and the Wellesleys. Nicholas Biddulph of Rathrobin and Fortal had married Patience Colley, daughter of Thomas Colley, in 1736.  Nicholas Biddulph and Francis Harrison Biddulph of Vicarstown were 1st cousins once removed.
Richard Colley of Castle Carbury, changed his name to Wesley when he inherited Dangan Castle, Trim, County Meath, from his cousin Garret Wesley in 1728. The name later became Wellesley, and Richard became the grandfather of Arthur Wellesley, 1st Duke of Wellington. What is not known is whether Thomas Colley, the father of Patience, and Richard Colley, were related.
This connection must remain speculative until it is further researched.

Francis attended Trinity College Dublin in 1821.
He married Lucy Bickerstaffe in 1845.
On the 2d inst., at St. Bride’s church, Liverpool, by the Rev. H. Stewart, M.A., Francis M. Biddulph, Esq., of Rathrobbin Castle, King’s County, Ireland, to Lucy, second daughter of the late Robert Bickerstaff, Esq., formerly of Preston, in the County Of Lancaster.
They had seven children.
Annie Adela Waller Biddulph was born on the 25th March 1847. Annie was married twice. Her first husband was John Willcocks of Chapelizod, County Dublin. They had three children. John died in 1918, and Annie remarried John Ouseley Bonsall Murphy. She died in 1926 and is buried in the Willcocks family plot in Chapelizod.
Francis Biddulph was born and died an infant in 1848.
Middleton Westenra Biddulph was born on the 17th August 1849.  He married Vera Josephine Flower in St. Luke, Chelsea, in 1891. They had no children. Middleton rebuilt Rathrobin. He too died in 1826.
Assheton Biddulph was born on the 12th of October 1850. He married Florence Caroline Boothby, and they lived in Moneyguyneen near Birr. They had five children.
Franc Digby Biddulph was born on the 22nd April 1853. He married Louisa Maria Susannah Rossborough-Colclough, of Tintern Abbey, New Ross, County Wexford, and took the Colclough name. They had two children.
Gertrude Louisa Biddulph was born on the 22nd September 1856. She too was married twice. She married George Carpenter Anderson in 1879, and they had five children. George died in 1887. She subsequently married Dr. Nevill Potow Cadell and they had one son, Assheton Biddulph Cadell, who died at Ypres in 1916. Gertrude died in Sussex in 1945.
Florence Biddulph. Of whom nothing is known.

In 1841 there was an attempt on the life of Francis Marsh Biddulph. Mr. Biddulph had ejected two of his tenants, related to the prisoners, Michael Doherty and Michael Colgan, who were on trial for their lives charged with attempted murder. Both were young men. Two previous trials had failed to reach a result. At the third trial Michael Colgan was described as ‘respectably dressed in a blue coat, light waistcoat, and a blue scarf.’ Michael Doherty ‘wore the ordinary attire of a decent countryman.
The two men were acquitted, and Francis Biddulph was himself suspended from his position as a local magistrate, as he had advised the prisoners to flee the country and so escape justice. The trial, known as The Biddulph Case, was covered extensively in the newspapers and would repay further investigation.

Francis died in 1868 and was buried in Ballyboy, County Offaly. His tombstone was recorded as standing in 1998, with the coffin visible.  His wife, Lucy died in England in 1896.
Biddulph - March 27, to the inexpressible grief of his sorrowing wife and family, F.M. Biddulph, Esq., Rathrobbin, King's County, aged 65.