Thursday 27 November 2014

(148) Grove Annesley of Annes Grove

Annesley family
In 1766 Mary Grove (d. 1791), the last of the line of the Groves of Ballyhimmock, married Francis Charles Annesley, 2nd Viscount Glerawly and later 1st Earl Annesley. Somewhat unusually for the time, Mary had complete freedom in the disposition of her property, and she left a complex will, under which a life interest in the estate passed first to her husband and then to other female relatives, with the ultimate remainder to her husband's nephew, Arthur Annesley (1774-1849), on condition that he took the additional surname Grove.  The estate was let by the successive life tenants, and though initially the property was kept in good heart, by the 1820s it had been sub-let and had fallen into a sorry state. At some point around 1830 Arthur Grove Annesley gained possession and put in hand the restoration and refitting of the house, which had been completed by 1837; he also renamed the property Annes Grove.

Annes Grove passed on his death to his eldest son, Richard Grove Annesley (1815-94), who married late in life, so that his two surviving sons were still minors when he died. The elder son, Richard Arthur Grove Annesley (1879-1966) came of age in 1900 and devoted much of his life to creating a famous garden at Annes Grove, taking advantage of the varied microclimates encouraged by the natural topography to create garden areas of different character, including a famous sub-tropical garden. When he died he was succeeded by his younger son, Patrick Grove Annesley (1911-75), who continued to develop the garden. At his early death the estate passed to the Annes Grove Estate Company, and his younger son, Patrick Grove Annesley (b. 1943), came to Annes Grove to manage the property. In 2016 it was announced that the Office of Public Works had taken over responsibility for the care and preservation of the gardens.

Annes Grove (formerly Ballyhimmock), Castletownroche, Cork

Annes Grove: entrance front. Image: Doc Brown

The origins of the Annes Grove estate can be traced back to 1628, when William Grove purchased lands in Co. Cork. The house, at first called Ballyhimmock, dates originally from c.1740 and was probably built for Robert Grove JP (d. 1764) after his marriage to Mary Ryland in 1741.  The entrance front has seven bays and two storeys over a basement, and the closely-spaced fenestration of that time.  

Under the will of Mary Annesley (née Grove), who died in 1791, the estate passed to her husband, the 1st Earl Annesley, for life, and then to a number of female relatives, with the ultimate remainder to her husband's nephew, Arthur Annesley, then a boy of ten but later a Lt-General in the army. By 1825 the estate had been sub-let to inferior tenants: 
"...all of whom in succession have so dilapidated it, that instead of its being what I recollect it, a residence for a gentleman of large fortune, it is now literally desolated, dilapidated, and nearly a complete ruin. The timber has been cut down and disposed of; the house has been, in a great degree, dismantled; and it is, to all intents a purposes, nearly a wreck" (Robert de la Cour).
Lt-Gen. The Hon. Arthur Annesley (1774-1849) as the reversionary owner of the freehold, did his best to arrest these dilapidations, but not until he came into possession was he able to eject the unsatisfactory tenants and restore the property, which he renamed Anne's Grove as a pun on his name. In 1837, Samuel Lewis called it "a handsome mansion, recently built by the proprietor", but it would seem the General was responsible only for a restoration and refitting, including the addition of the wooden porch with engaged Doric columns and sidelights with curved astragals. The garden front is of three storeys because the land drops away to the River Awbeg, and is less regular.  Flanking the garden side are a stable court and a dairy yard.  

Annes Grove demesne, as shown on the 1st edition Ordnance Survey of Ireland 6" map.
In 1776 Arthur Young described the valley of the River Awbeg in the grounds as 'a wild romantic glen', and it seems to have been first improved in the romantic manner in the 1770s. A walled garden with a viewing mount survives from the 18th century, but the grounds as they now exist were developed chiefly in the early 20th century. Richard Grove Annesley (1879-1966) subscribed to plant hunting expeditions and laid out a woodland garden with rhododendrons grown from seed collected in Burma, Tibet and the Yunan peninsula by Frank Kingdon Ward. Other spectacular flowering shrubs dating from this period include Cornus cousa, embothrium, eucryphia and hoheria. Down in the river valley is a sub-tropical jungle of bamboos, gunnera, skunk cabbage and Himalayan primulas, which respond to a microclimate produced by the limestone cliffs on the far side of the river. The gardens have been regularly opened to the public for many years, but after extensive storm damage in 2012 they were closed. In 2016 it was announced that the Office of Public Works had acquired the gardens with a view to restoring and reopening them.

Annes Grove: the riverside gardens.
Annes Grove: lodge designed by Benjamin Woodward, 1849-53

There is a castellated entrance gateway and lodge by Benjamin Woodward of Deane & Woodward, 1849-53 at one end of the demesne, which is now leased to the Irish Landmark Trust.

Descent: sold 1628 to William Grove (d. 1669); given 1666 to son, Maj. Ion Grove (d. 1692), who gave 1667 to brother, John Grove (d. c.1707); to nephew, Alexander Grove (d. 1707); to son, Ion Grove (1687-1730); to son, Robert Grove (d. 1764); to daughter, Mary Annesley, Countess Annesley (d. 1791); to her husband, Francis Charles Annesley (1740-1802) for life; then to female relatives who leased the property; then to her husband's nephew, Lt-Gen. the Hon. Arthur Annesley (later Grove Annesley) (1774-1849); to son, Richard Grove Annesley (1815-94); to son, Richard Grove Annesley (1879-1966); to son, (Edmund) Patrick Grove Annesley (1911-75); to son, (Francis) Patrick Grove Annesley (b. 1943).

Grove Annesley family of Annes Grove

Grove Annesley (né Annesley), Lt-Gen. Hon. Arthur (1774-1849). Third son of Richard Annesley (1741-1824), 2nd Earl Annesley, and his wife Anne, only daughter and heiress of Robert Lambert of Dunlady (Down), born 9 November 1774. Lt-General in the Army; High Sheriff of Co. Cork, 1843. He married, 28 December 1814, Elizabeth (1797-1863), only child of John Mahon of Bessborough (Tipperary) and had issue including:
(1) Richard Arthur Grove Annesley (1815-94) (q.v.);
(2) Mary Grove Annesley (1817-89), born 3 February 1817; married, 21 April 1835, Capt. Warden Hatton Flood (d. 1882), son of O'Donovan Flood and had issue; died 11 September 1889;
(3) Charlotte Frances Grove Annesley (b. & d. 1818), born 28 February and died 8 April 1818;
(4) John Charles Grove Annesley (1819-1904) of Ballykeating (Cork), born 28 October 1819; married, 1870, Belinda Murphy and had issue one son and two daughters; died 4 January 1904;
(5) Charlotte Johanna Grove Annesley (b. & d. 1821), born 16 and died 26 March 1821;
(6) (Arthur) FitzArthur Grove Annesley (1822-94), born 19 June 1822; died unmarried, 21 November 1894;
(7) Charlotte Elizabeth Grove Annesley (1823-42), born 7 August 1823; married, 20 August 1840, Loftus Henry Bland QC MP of Blandsfort (Leix), son of John Bland, and had issue one son; died 26 March 1842;
(8) Georgiana Grove Annesley (1824-98), born 3 October 1824; married, 20 August 1840, George White West (d. 1869) of Ardenode (Kildare), barrister, son of Matthew West, and had issue five sons and nine daughters; died 7 January 1898;
(9) Capt. William Geoffrey Grove Annesley (1826-73), born 12 February 1826; Captain in 6th Foot, 1863-68; married, 8 March 1866, Eliza, daughter of J. Taylor of Good Hope (Jamaica), but died without issue, 6 April 1873;
(10) Elizabeth Grove Annesley (1827-90), born 26 August 1827; died unmarried, 26 June 1890; will proved at Belfast 27 August 1890 (estate £1,490);
(11) Fanny St. Lawrence Grove Annesley (1829-71), born 12 October 1829; married, 26 October 1850, George Montgomery Vaughan of Quilly (Down) and had issue one son and two daughters; died 17 September 1871;
(12) Henry Robert Grove Annesley (1831-1908), born 22 April 1831; County Inspector in Royal Irish Constabulary; married, 20 November 1862, Kathleen Letitia (d. 1919), only daughter of Benjamin Tilly and had issue two sons and two daughters; died 3 November 1908;
(13) An unnamed daughter (b. & d. 1832), born and died 17 August 1832;
(14) Louisa Augusta Grove Annesley (1834-1915), born 2 October 1834; married, 6 September 1871, Rev. William Johnson Thornhill (d. 1888), prebendary of Dublin and rector of Rathcoole; died 1 July 1915; 
(15) Warden Francis Grove Annesley (1836-75), born 30 July 1836; married, 20 July 1870, Anne Letitia, daughter of George Stawell, but died without issue, 19 September 1875;
(16) Margaret Browne Grove Annesley (1839-75?), born 7 June 1839; married, 1 October 1868, Rev. Samuel Barker Greene Young (d. 1877), rector of Wallstown (Cork); died without issue;
(17) Catherine Grove Annesley (1842-1903), born January 1842; married, 20 January 1863, Lt. Henry Albert Platt (d. 1888), son of Samuel Pratt, and had issue; died 18 July 1903; will proved 27 August 1903 (estate £550).
He inherited a contingent remainder of the Ballyhimmock estate from his uncle's wife in 1791. It is not clear when he came into possession, but it was between 1814 and 1831. He then took the additional surname Grove, renamed the house Annes Grove, and carried out alterations to the house, including the addition of the porch.
He died 7 November 1849 and was buried in the family vault at Castletownroche. His widow died 26 February 1863.

Grove Annesley, Richard Arthur (1815-94).  Eldest son of Lt-Gen. Hon. Arthur Grove Annesley (1774-1849) and his wife Elizabeth, daughter of John Mahon of Bessborough (Tipperary), born 2 December 1815. Educated at Eton and Trinity College, Dublin (admitted 1831). JP for Co. Cork. He married, 7 August 1878, Sara Augusta Ruth (d. 1929), daughter of Canon John Abraham Bolster, rector of Killaspigmullane (Cork) and had issue:
(1) Richard Arthur Grove Annesley (1879-1966) (q.v.);
(2) William John Grove Annesley (b. & d. 1881), born and died, 7 May 1881;
(3) Warden Beresford Grove Annesley (b. 1882), born 15 June 1882; educated at Harrow; travelled in America, c.1903; served as Lt. in 3rd Battn, East Kent Regiment.
He inherited the Annes Grove estate from his father in 1849.
He died 17 February 1892; his will was proved at Dublin, 21 June 1892 (estate £41,990). His widow married 2nd, 1 October 1907, Harold Locke, and died 23 November 1929; administration of her goods was granted 7 January 1930 (estate in England £3,290).

Grove Annesley, Richard Arthur (1879-1966). Eldest son of Richard Grove Annesley (1815-94) and his wife Sara Augusta Ruth, daughter of Canon John Arthur Bolster, born 20 June 1879. Educated at Harrow. A Lt. in the Northern Ireland Horse, 1914-22. He married, 7 March 1907, Hilda Margaret (1869-1961), daughter of Sir Francis Edmund Workman-Macnaghten, 3rd bt. and formerly wife of Henry Cecil Phillips of Clifford (Cork), and had issue:
(1) (Richard Francis) Michael Grove Annesley (1908-79), born 2 September 1908; educated at Eton and privately; served with East African forces in Africa and Asia; Lt. in Kings African Rifles, 1941-45; manager of the mining section of Booth & Co. (Africa), 1951; married 1st, 1931 (div. 1939), Elizabeth, daughter of J. Anderson of Edinburgh and had issue one daughter; married 2nd, 1 July 1939, Elsie Susannah, daughter of Jacob Daniel Krige of Stellenbosch (South Africa) and formerly wife of Reginald de Beer of Johannesburg, and had issue one son and one daughter; died 1979;
(2) twin, (Edmund) Patrick Grove Annesley (1911-75) (q.v.);
(3) twin, Diana Patricia Grove Annesley (1911-98), born 11 September 1911; married, 3 December 1932, (William) Martin Hill CMG (d. 1976), Asst. Secretary-General of the United Nations, son of William Henry Hill of Currabinny (Cork) and had issue one son; died 8 January 1998.
He inherited the Annes Grove estate from his father in 1892 and came of age in 1900. He was responsible for creating the present gardens at Annes Grove.
He died 4 February 1966. His wife died 4 March 1961, aged 92.

Grove Annesley, (Edmund) Patrick (1911-75).  Second son of Richard Arthur Grove Annesley (1879-1966) and his wife Hilda Margaret, daughter of Sir Francis Edmund Workman-Macnaghten, 3rd bt., born 11 September 1911. Educated at Harrow. Managing Director of Omo Sawmills, Nigeria (retired 1957) and W.M. Valentine Ltd., London, 1958-66. He married, 7 December 1939, Ruth (d. 2007), eldest daughter of Arthur Norman Rushforth of Jersey and had issue:
(1) (Arthur) Nöel Grove Annesley (b. 1941) (q.v.);
(2) (Francis) Patrick Grove Annesley (b. 1943) (q.v.)
He inherited the Annes Grove estate from his father in 1966.
He died 27 February 1975. His widow died 15 March 2007.

Grove Annesley, (Arthur) Nöel (b. 1941). Elder son of (Edmund) Patrick Grove Annesley (1911-75) and his wife Ruth, daughter of Arthur Norman Rushforth of Jersey, born 28 December 1941.  Educated at Harrow and Worcester College, Oxford.  Employed by Christies auctioneers, London, 1964-2011 (director since 1969; deputy chairman 1985-91; deputy Chairman, Christies International plc, 1992-98, Christies Fine Art Ltd. 1998-2000; Chairman of Christies Fine Art International Specialist Group, 2000-03 and Christies Education, 2000-11); trustee of Dulwich Picture Gallery, 1998-2010 (deputy chairman, 2006-10); member of National Heritage Memorial Fund advisory panel, 2006-11; governor of Yehudi Menuhin School since 2000. He married, 7 September 1968, Caroline Susan Aurea, elder daughter of Thomas Henry Waldore Lumley of London and has issue:
(1) Marcus Robert Grove Annesley (b. 1972); born 27 March 1972;
(2) James Alexander Grove Annesley (b. 1974); born 22 May 1974.
He lives in London.
Now living.

Grove Annesley, (Francis) Patrick (b. 1943). Second son of (Edmund) Patrick Grove Annesley (1911-75) and his wife Ruth, daughter of Arthur Norman Rushforth of Jersey, born 1 December 1943. Educated at Harrow and University College, Oxford (MA). Publisher with Macdonald & Co. and later Cassell & Co. He married, 30 November 1968, Jane Frances, elder daughter of Egbert James Neville Holder of Squire's Hill, Tilford (Surrey) and had issue:
(1) Melanie Jane Ruth Grove Annesley (b. 1969); married, 1994, Paul Muende;
(2) Cressida Mary Siobhan Grove Annesley (b. 1971), born 18 February 1971; archivist to Canterbury Cathedral; married, 2005, Jonathan R. Williams.
He manages the Annes Grove estate on behalf of the Annes Grove Estate Co.
Now living.


Burke's Irish Family Records, 1976, pp. 27-28; Burke's Peerage & Baronetage, 2003, pp. 108-09; A selection of the reports and papers of the House of Commons, vol. 7: the state of Ireland, 1836, p. 521; M. Bence-Jones, A guide to Irish country houses, 1990, p.5; E. Malins & P. Bowe, Irish Gardens and Demesnes from 1830, 1980, pp.119-122; A.P.W. Malcolmson, The pursuit of the heiress: aristocratic marriage in Ireland, 1740-1840, 2006, pp. 75-76.

Location of archives

Grove Annesley family of Annes Grove: deeds and papers, 1628-20th cent. [Private Collection: enquiries to National Library of Ireland].

Coat of arms

Arms of Annesley: Paly of six, argent and azure, overall a bend gules.
Arms of Grove: Ermine, on a chevron engrailed gules, three escallopes argent.

Revision and acknowledgements

This post was first published on 27th November 2014 and was updated on 3rd June 2015 and 8th November 2016. I am most grateful to Cressida Williams and Terence Reeves-Smyth for additional information and corrections.

1 comment:

  1. An excellent series on a fascinating family. Glad to know one branch is still 'in situ'.


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