The village of Castlepollard is a colorful place, highlighted by the 17th century Gothic Revival Tunnynally Castle. In addition to an extraordinary surrounding park and gardens, this castle claims the distinction of being the largest castle in Ireland that also remains a family home. The house and grounds provide visitors with a fine view onto the Midlands of Ireland, where the pace is slow and easy, and lakes and rivers embellish lush, verdant landscapes. The word Tullynally actually means “Hill of the Swans”. Its castle has a rich history, preserved by the
The word Tullynally actually means “Hill of the Swans”. Its castle has a rich history, preserved by the Packenham family, which has made its home there for ten generations. Noteworthy family members include royal biographer Elizabeth Longford and Antonia Fraser, wife of Harold Pinter. Since the 17th century, Tullynally Castle has served as the official residence of the Earls of Longford.
The stately manor house displays collections of art and fine china enjoyed by generations of gentry; while a courtyard museum has Victorian kitchen and laundry items used by the family’s servants. A park with some truly spectacular gardens surrounds the house. The current occupant of the estate, Thomas Fraser, is an avid forester – both the forest park and ornamental gardens have received lavish attention. Visitors give rave reviews to the castle grounds, which include ornamental lakes and ponds, plus a grotto and various walled gardens.
Convenient hiking trails lead through the adjoining forest, providing exceptional views of the house and gardens, including one of the largest kitchen gardens in Ireland. Tree lovers will be enthralled by the extensive variety of species, especially the grove of ancient Irish yew trees.