The Duckett’s grove we see today is the skeletal remains of this once glorious 19th Century Gothic Revival Mansion. The walls seem to whisper of passion, love, intrigue and violence. A vacant building that is now home to the ghosts of its past and the wailing Banshee that haunts its high towers.
Phone – +353 (0)58 913 0411
Website – duckettsgrove.eu
Duckett’s Grove Opening Times
Duckett’s Grove is open to the public during daylight house, 8AM – 8PM
There is a wonderful Tea Room located at Duckett’s Grove. They are open on Sundays and bank holidays. It is also open at special times of the year such as for the Duckett’s Grove Christmas market.
Open Sundays 10am-5pm
Sinead’s Thoughts on Duckett’s Grove
Driving through the massive expansive and ornate gate that leads to Duckett’s Grove you can not help but get the sense that you are about to encounter something spectacular that was once the grandest home in this area.
As we traveled the long and winding road to the Great Gothic Revival Mansion you quickly come to the realization that you are not just going to the site of a famous house you are traveling though what would have been one of Carlow and Ireland’s largest estates.
The freshly cut corn and the sound of nature engulfing you in the feeling that you are walking into a forgotten place that is frozen in time or that maybe times seems to have forgotten.
As you see the haunting vision in the distance that is Duckett’s Grove you will feel a sense of terror as well as excitement that you are about to visit one of Ireland’s most haunted properties. The house now ravaged by time and flames is still imposing and poses more questions then we can ever hope to answer.
This haunting Gothic Revival Mansion was the centre of a massive estate that belonged to the Duckett Family. This estate spanned 12.000 acres of the Carlow Countryside.
The original house on this site was a two story Georgian Country home. However as the Duckett family’s wealth grew so did the house under William Duckett. The family began to entertain more and became prominent member of the society.
With their lavish lifestyle the Duckett’s needed a property that they thought reflected their wealth and prominence. At the start of 1818 Thomas Cobden designed a gothic revival mansion inspired Castle on the request of The Duckett family under John Davidson Duckett.
John Davidson Duckett funded his passion for building by making several advantageous marriages to the daughters of wealthy merchants. All the Georgian features were removed or hidden from view.
The resulting house contained high towers with elaborate turrets, which are round, square and octagonal.
With the tallest octagonal turret dominant as it rises from the bowels of this building to overlook the Duckett’s estates. The entire building is decorated with elaborate oriels and niches that would have contained beautiful statues.
William Duckett died in 1908 leaving the house to his wife Maria Georgina, who had one daughter Olive.
Maria and Olive were no longer on speaking terms due to a rift in the family. Upon her death in 1937 she left her what is known as “the angry shilling”, which meant she was left one shilling instead of the landed estate of Duckett’s Grove.
An agent then managed the estate until 1921 and then by several local farmers and The Land Commission. In 1939 the estates was divided and sold.
During the 1930’s the local IRA flying column used Duckett’s Grove as a hide out. The formally imposing and magnificent mansion was gutted by fire in 1933 and has remained in ruins every since.
Carlow County Council came into possession of Duckett’s Grove in 2005 and opened to the pubic as a park in 2007. Both the upper walled garden and the lower walled gardens have been restored. The lower walled garden was once the family orchard, which contains a wide variety of historic apples.
Having appeared on the Syfy’s Destination Truth Duckett’s Grove was launched onto he world stage. It is locally known as a haunted building and the home of a legendary banshee. The current ruined status of this Gothic Revival Mansion adds to the feeling of mystery surrounding the haunting of Duckett’s Grove.
The last person to live in Duckett’s Grove was a lady called Francis Brady and she is reported to have regularly heard the wailing Banshee, she passed away in the 1990’s.
The local people of the area tell tales that refer to people dying shortly after having heard the wail of the Banshee of Duckett’s Grove. It is also said that these bird filled haunted walls, are haunted by the ghosts of the Duckett Family.
The Duckett Family are said to still walk the halls of what was a bustling house with the great rooms of their fantasy Gothic Mansion. Refusing to leave for the next world. There have also been reports of shadowy human figures, unexplained light and frightening sounds coming from inside the Mansion.
Due to the large number of unexplained paranormal phenomena and the vast amount of people they attracted to Duckett’s Grove, the Castle is closed to the public during the hours of darkness. Duckett’s Grove closed at night is for health and safety reasons.
Plans are however underway for this amazing building to be open for tours at night, for visitors who are hoping to have a supernatural encounter with some of Duckett’s Govern other worldly residents.
The Banshee is said to be the result of a Piseog, which is an Irish curse that has been placed on the family or the house. She is capable of bringing about death, and ruin. The Piseog was cast upon William Duckett, by the angry and bitter, mother of a young woman he had been having an affair with.
The girl was killed when she fell from her horse while riding on the estate of Duckett’s Grove. This banshee warns of and brings both dead and ruin as she wails from the towers of Duckett’s Grove. There are several first had accounts of hearing the Banshee of Duckett’s Grove, including a woman who died suddenly in the grounds and a gardener who heard the spirit, who’s mother died the next day.
Servant’s reported hearing the sound of a ghostly horse and carriage approaching the house. The spirit of William Duckett has also been seen riding his horse on the estate.
The skeletal remains of this once glorious fantasy Gothic revival mansion are full of stories that we will never hear but as you walk around the grounds and look in through the bars that now guard the doors you will be sucked into the past.
Discovering an appreciation for what these ruins have seen and how now even in ruins seem to draw in the most wonderful and haunting stories of a family who were obsessed with material wealth and the importance of their reputation.
Duckett’s Grove, County Carlow was once home to the Duckett Family. A family with skeletons in their closets, filled with violence and infidelity that seems to have followed them into other worlds. They and the Banshee are still linked and haunt the skeletal remains of this once magnificent yet tragic house that has been reduced to ruins.