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Mount Stewart to be reunited with its historic demesne


Mount Stewart’s world famous house and gardens in County Down are to be reunited with their historic demesne after more than half a century. The news comes as a major project to restore the neo-classical house to its former glory enters its final stages.

Connecting the house and gardens with the demesne – land which was historically attached to Mount Stewart – will increase the size of the National Trust site from 100 to 1000 acres, incorporating surrounding parkland and countryside.

Visitors to the property, located on the shores of Strangford Lough, will be able to explore extensive woodland, farmland, a range of historic monuments and buildings and a previously unseen walled garden. There will be opportunities for cycling and horse riding on the old rides of the estate and even more to discover on foot.

The area will be gradually opened up as part of a £4 million project. 

Work has already begun to restore the walled garden, once a powerhouse of the demesne which produced fruit and vegetables to serve the estate. The walled garden also features a historic glasshouse which is home to the nearly 250 year-old ‘White Syrian’ vine, the oldest vine in Ireland.

The house itself will reopen in April 2015 following a £7.5 million conservation project, aimed at restoring it to the elegance and charm of its early 20th century hey-day, when it was home to Lady Londonderry. The work, which includes structural repairs, has taken three years and involved many specialist teams.