Fort Ward is Northern Eire’s most famed case of 2 architectural kinds clamouring for consideration in the only construction: neoclassical as opposed to gothick. Fort Dobbs has a much less excessive however nonetheless sudden twin persona: Georgian as opposed to Italianate. Extra of that later.
“For its date, 1750 to 54, it’s relatively with out an equivalent in Ulster, whilst its absolute best Palladian plan with flanking wings… is difficult to compare in a area of this scale anyplace in Eire.” Prof Alistair Rowan
Set in a secluded walled and wooded demesne, Fort Dobbs is a fantastic survival, untouched by means of the orange glow of spreading suburbia and nonetheless owned by means of the circle of relatives from whom its title is derived. The existing Top Sheriff of County Antrim is Nigel Dobbs. His ancestor Richard Dobbs was Top Sheriff of County Antrim in 1664. Its airy postal deal with is 74 Tongue Loanen.
The property used to be established within the 16th century when a tender John Dobbs accompanied Sir Henry Dockwra to Carrickfergus in 1596. Dobbs therefore was Dockwra’s deputy as Treasurer of Ulster. John Dobbs used to be the grandson of Sir Richard Dobbs, Lord Mayor of London in 1551 and a founding father of Christ’s Clinic London. A name would by no means seem within the Dobbs lineage once more.
Seven years later John Dobbs married Margaret Dalway, the one kid of John Dalway, a landowner granted estates in Kilroot and Ballynure in 1601 by means of James I. Dobbs offered the newlyweds with a freehold hire of a portion of his lands in Kilroot. The couple proceeded to construct the primary Fort Dobbs. It used to be recorded in 1610:
“One John Dobb buylte a fayre fortress inside of two myle of Knockfargus referred to as Dobbes Fort about w’ch he entends to buylde a bawne of stone… This Fort is buylte upon parte of Ensigne Dallawayes lande.”
Dalway had come to Eire within the 1570s as an officer within the Earl of Essex’s military. In 1606 he constructed a bawn (a stone enclosure for cows) on his newly obtained land. The bawn consisted of 4 10m prime towers with a 13m lengthy curtain wall between every one. He constructed his area in the midst of the bawn.
Over the doorway to the bawn is a gallows for unwelcome guests. The towers had 3 flooring fitted for firing cannons. 3 of the towers stay. Initially the bawn would have held 200 cows. Dalway used to be Mayor of Carrickfergus in 1592 and 1600. The ultimate of the Dalways, Marriott Dalway, left together with his circle of relatives for Australia in 1884.
Again to the Dobbs circle of relatives. John and Margaret had two sons with the good names of Foulk and Hercules. Dalway naturally nominated his grandson as inheritor since he used to be the elder son. However a circle of relatives row used to be to erupt over the Dalway property.
At the demise of his first spouse, Dalway married Jane Norton who could not stand the sight of her step daughter-in-law. Norton persuaded her new husband to make a will in favour of his nephew as an alternative. All hell broke free in 1618 when Dalway died. John and Margaret started a chronic criminal struggle to say the property for Foulk’s sake.
On the first listening to the courtroom governed in favour of the Dobbs circle of relatives however the elected inheritor challenged this ruling. No longer one to surrender simply, John Dobbs spark off together with his son to London to petition the king. He succeeded in acquiring His Majesty’s Grant to the lands of the past due John Dalway.
Alternatively their triumphal go back used to be to not be. Each Dobbs senior and junior drowned when their send used to be wrecked off the Cheshire sea coast in 1622. Hercules persisted the criminal war of words with all his energy. The legislation go well with used to be in the end settled with a compromise when referees appointed by means of the Lord Chancellor governed that Hercules be awarded lands at Fort Dobbs and Ballynure in addition to rights to tenement in Carrickfergus. The rest of the property used to be awarded to Dalway’s nephew. The ruling should have made for awkward neighbourly members of the family – Dalway’s Bawn is a stone’s throw from the doorway to the Fort Dobbs lands.
Hercules married Magdalene West of Ballydugan in 1633. That they had one son, Richard, born in 1634. Hercules died the similar 12 months, elderly 21. At simply 3 months outdated, Richard Dobbs inherited Fort Dobbs at the side of land at Ballynure.
Richard used to be reared by means of his mom’s circle of relatives in County Down round Downpatrick and Saul. Elderly 21 he married Dorothy Williams, daughter of Bryan Williams of Clints Corridor in Yorkshire. After his marriage, Dobbs returned to Fort Dobbs. In 1683 he wrote,
“My area, which is a plantation and growth of my very own time (tho’ descended from my nice Grandfather)… is known as Fort-Dobs from a small fortress right here, constructed by means of my Grandfather.” Richard got to work bettering the fortress and gardens. The ruins of this fortress lie beside the present area. Dalway’s Bawn continues to be intact even though the home it as soon as surrounded has disappeared into the mists of time.
On settling at Fort Dobbs he quickly was fascinated by civil affairs. In 1671 Dobbs used to be elected Mayor of Carrickfergus, an honour bestowed on him on 4 later events. Carrickfergus used to be one of the crucial 4 maximum necessary cities of past due 17th century Eire. Perks of the task incorporated the requirement that tenants would “furnish the Mayor with numerous fats hens at Christmas or a specified sum in lieu”. Dobbs described enhancements to his the town:
“The way in which out of the north side road used to be first paved; the partitions that deliver the water throughout the churchyard had been constructed, and the city pump used to be arrange by means of benevolence. The Sword and Usual within the church used to be refurbished, and cash used to be ordered for recasting the bell.”
Additionally in 1683, Dobbs started his file A Transient Description of County Antrim. It has turn out to be a useful supply for native historians. The unique manuscript is within the Northern Eire Public Information Administrative center and a replica is held within the library of Trinity Faculty Dublin. In addition to descriptions of the constructed and herbal surroundings, he recounts stories of folklore and social actions equivalent to searching with the Earls of Antrim at Glenarm Fort.
Richard and Dorothy Dobbs had two sons and 3 daughters. The eldest son John used to be skilled at Eton Faculty as a result of his father had aspirations for him to sign up for the church. Alternatively the younger John went to a Quaker assembly in Carrickfergus and joined that sect. He returned to England to review drugs and in the end settled in County Cork the place he labored as a physician. His father used to be no longer inspired and it used to be some other case of changing a will. John used to be bequeathed a measly 10 in keeping with annum whilst his more youthful brother Richard inherited the circle of relatives property.
Richard junior enlisted within the Duke of Schomberg’s military to combat within the Williamite Wars. So those had been the progenitors of the illustrious Dobbs circle of relatives. A prominent line of politicians, statesmen, churchmen, barristers and infantrymen used to be to observe.
The existing Fort Dobbs used to be constructed by means of Arthur Dobbs, Surveyor of the Irish Works and later Governor of North Carolina. The go back and forth creator Richard Pococke recorded in 1752, “Mr Dobbs is now construction on an excessively tremendous spot on emerging flooring.” The encompassing oak timber predate the home. Arthur’s descendent, Captain Dobbs, writing within the 20th century notes,
“The outdated fortress most definitely fell into disrepair – or as circle of relatives legend has it: used to be sacked by means of pirates, and the existing area has been added to, because it used to be constructed. The creator can take into account that when alterations had been made to the higher a part of the existing fortress the internal partitions proved to be made with turf.”
As successor to the acclaimed architect Sir Edward Lovett Pearce, Arthur Dobbs obtained a prominent library for his position as Surveyor of the Irish Works. He’s identified to have owned James Gibbs’ A Ebook of Structure, dated 1728. Plate 64 used to be for a ‘Draught accomplished for a Gentleman in Essex’. Most certainly by no means constructed, this plate illustrates a strong Palladian nation area like a smaller model of Ditchley. The plate is lacking from Dobbs’ reproduction.
Sir Charles Brett believed Fort Dobbs to be loosely in accordance with Gibbs’ design and it sort of feels a cheap presumption. There are some main deviations, even though. Fort Dobbs has a raised, no longer sunken, basement, lending it an increased and extra spectacular entrance than the unique design. Rather than Gibb’s columned colonnades are courtyard quadrants with paired oeil-de-boeufs. I’d pass even additional than Charlie Brett and recommend that Arthur Dobbs himself directed the general design with a lot of lend a hand from Pearce. A gathering of 3 nice minds?
Arthur Dobbs used to be a multifaceted gentleman – an agriculturalist and organiser of expeditions to find the North West Passage from Hudson’s Bay to the Pacific. Whilst a member of the Irish Parliament, he bought 400,000 acres of land in North Carolina from the McCulloch circle of relatives in 1745. Dobbs used to be later granted some other 60,000 acres in New Hanover County. His 5,000 acres at Fort Dobbs used to be undoubtedly small fry when compared.
In 1795 Dobbs died whilst he used to be getting ready to go back from his new house at Cape Worry, North Carolina (often known as Fort Dobbs). Any other aspect of his lifestyles have been establishing Scotch-Irish immigration to The united states. The primary tenants Dobbs introduced over from Eire sailed in 1751.
He set sail with “my tenants and their neighbours and pals” from Ballycarry, Kilroot and Carrickfergus. In 1766 Dobbs organised the emigration of some other batch of Scotch-Irish. The contingent certain for North and South Carolina incorporated Andrew and Elizabeth Jackson. That they had moved from their circle of relatives farm beside Dalway’s Bawn to Boneybefore close to Carrickfergus in preparation for his or her departure. Their son Andrew Jackson would turn out to be seventh President of the USA.
Anyway again to Fort Dobbs. The home as constructed incorporates a seven bay two storey double-pile major block over a considerable basement with 5 bay two storey projecting wings with out basements. The 2 storeys of the wings are the similar top because the basement and piano nobile in combination. Two quadrants hyperlink the 3 distinct portions of the construction to create an outstanding front entrance which embraces the customer just like the wings of an infinite eagle able to engulf its prey. The windowless elevations of projections the similar top as the principle block mission to the rear of each wings.
The piano nobile is accessed by means of a 19th century double staircase of reddish stone with carved balustrades and piers. The entire association is supported by means of two Greek Ionic columns flanked by means of undeniable pilasters which shape a portico to the basement front underneath. A way of arrival is assured by means of this triumph in stone.
The basement front accommodates a double leaf trees panelled front door surmounted by means of a cornice on consoled brackets. Upstairs, the piano nobile has a couple of trees glazed front doorways and a window on all sides set in a slight 3 bay projection. The seven first flooring home windows all have a undeniable encompass and key block.
Partitions are ruled-and-lined render with – deep breath – chamfered vermiculated rusticated stepped quoins and undeniable raised quoins to the highest flooring and south elevation. A modillioned eaves cornice to the wings continues as a string path to the central block. Home windows are trees sliding sashes, with uncovered bins to the doorway entrance, and masonry cills.
Now the wings. The west wing is detailed like the principle block with vermiculated rusticated quoins and undeniable banded rustication to the basement. Its elevation overlooking the forecourt has 5 12 pane home windows in the beginning flooring with moulded lugged architraves. A central trees panelled door with undeniable raised stepped quoins with two it seems that detailed 9 pane home windows to every aspect at the flooring flooring. The west elevation incorporates seven bays reasonably irregularly positioned. A recessed phase on the nook of this wing and the south elevation has stairs resulting in the piano nobile with a door surmounted by means of a jaunty leaded nook cover. Get right of entry to to the basement is thru a trees panelled door underneath the steps. The gable finish of the west wing is clean.
The east wing is confronted with governed and coated render very similar to the west wing. A 5 bay elevation overlooks the forecourt. This 5 bay elevation is like an inverted view of the west wing with better 16 pane sliding sash home windows at the raised basement and smaller 8 pane sliding sash home windows above. The rear elevation could also be very similar to that of the west wing.
The south dealing with lawn elevation has a extra two dimensional high quality and not using a projections. As an alternative, 13 bays stretch underneath a centrally positioned undeniable pediment over the center 3 bays. Undeniable cast parapets surmount the elevations and bracketed cornices end the wings. 4 ruled-and-lined rendered chimneys with sq. terracotta pots emerging from the herbal slate roof whole the image.
And so for a century Fort Dobbs remained just about an completed variation of Gibbs’ plate. Fort Dobbs used to be exquisitely restored within the past due 20th century and now glistens. It’s the antithesis of the crumbling Irish nation properties liked by means of espresso desk e-book publishers. By the way Fort Dobbs is among the few nation properties of the British Isles by no means to had been printed in Nation Existence. However within the early 19th century, it wasn’t relatively so pristine. In 1839 James Boyle mentioned,
“The home is a spacious old school mansion, the doorway entrance presenting in its central construction and two projecting wings a slightly Elizabethan look. It’s 3 storeys prime and gifts a undeniable roughcast and deepwhite entrance – plantations, grounds and area are in an excessively disregarded state.”
The construction seems with an extra extension to the west elevation at the first version OS map of 1832. Valuations display the extension to had been farm constructions that have been pulled down between 1857 and 1859.
It’s most probably that contemporaneous with this demolition used to be the recovery and remodelling of Fort Dobbs. At the south elevation, Italianate architectural dressing creeps like ivy around the two decrease storeys. In the meantime the highest flooring and its undeniable pediment glance down in severity on the interloping element. The totally vermiculated rusticated basement remedy dates from this time. Definitely this hints on the writer being Sir Charles Lanyon, king of rustication (assume Crumlin Street Gaol which he rusticated to inside of an inch of its life). Identical rusticated main points had been implemented to the west wing however to not the east wing of the doorway entrance.
The home windows of the piano nobile at the south entrance had been decorated with entablatures on console brackets. The thick glazing bars of the multi paned Georgian home windows had been changed with idiosyncratic fenestration comprising two vertical panes within the higher sash and a unmarried pane within the decrease sash. That is so far as the remodelling went, for no matter explanation why now misplaced within the sands of time.
A neoclassical rendered 3 bay gatelodge at the quiet Tongue Loanen marks the doorway to this piece of paradise. In-built 1875, in contrast to the home, its architect is understood – S P Shut. It’s been restored. The similar architect’s gatelodge at the busy Carrickfergus to Kilroot street could also be 3 bay however is confronted with uncoursed squared quarry-faced basalt with limestone dressings and quoins. Tudor label mouldings to the home windows, a door set between classical columns in antis and a polychromatic chimney at the hipped roof give it an eclectic look. It lies vacant and its street overgrown. Two previous 19th century gatelodges have disappeared.
The home is approached by means of a gravel lane previous a lake with a cascade and over a bridge. The demesne accommodates tremendous mature timber grouped in safe haven belts, parkland, wooded area and avenues. Casual glen aspect walks had been augmented with contemporary planting. The walled lawn to the west of the home used to be redesigned in 1989 to commemorate the 250th anniversary of Arthur Dobbs’ delivery. Dobbs used to be a plantsman and famous for offering the primary written connection with the Venus fly-trap (Dionaea muscipula) whilst Governor of North Carolina. The potting sheds are again in use at the side of a closing glasshouse.
A sequence of 2 storey outbuildings bureaucracy a courtyard to the east of the home. Partitions are random rubble with brick dressings and eaves path; roofs are pitched and slated; home windows are trees casements and doorways are trees sheeted. In combination, the home grounds and related constructions shape an property of serious attractiveness and integrity.