Conservation Old Geashill School

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Historical background

While the design is often attributed to Thomas Mallison, the Old Geashill School was built by Lord Digby of Geashill in 1862. It is situated within a random coursed boundary wall and nearby stands a recently constructed replacement school building. Having been made redundant as a school, the building fell into disrepair and subsequently required significant repair works. Phase I of the refurbishment project had largely included emergency repairs and external conservation. In 2003, the Geashill Old School Conservation Committee applied to the Irish Georgian Society for funding for Phase II, which entailed works to the interior of the old school building, and was awarded €5,000.

Brief description of project

The funds partially covered a variety of works to the building’s lighting, plumbing, and electrical systems, as well as plaster and timber repairs necessitated by decay. Timber floors were repaired, window openings were re-pointed in lime mortar to complete previous window installation, and prior inappropriate repairs and additions were rectified. The building project was successfully completed and the schoolhouse was re-opened in September 2005 as a community centre.

The Old Geashill School stands as a fine example of the merits of creative re-use and the versatility of historic buildings.

Architectural description

The Old Geashill Schoolhouse is a three-bay, single-story structure built in the Tudor Revival style. A gable-fronted entrance porch breaks forward on the west elevation, along with half-dormer windows. Canted bay windows with stone mullions are to the north elevation. The walls of rock-faced limestone are surmounted by a pitched slate roof complete with terracotta ridge cresting. Tooled stone chimneystacks, finials, and a bellcote complete the structure.