Members of the Association attended a tour of 14 Henrietta Street in the north inner city of Dublin on Wednesday, 13th March.
Henrietta Street was built in the 1720s for Dublin’s wealthy elite. The street consisted of elegant town houses built as one-family homes. The tour of number 14 tells the story of the house and its inhabitants over the three centuries and describes how “The stories of the house and street mirror the story of Dublin and her citizens”.
The guide was very knowledgeable and described the architecture of the building and the elegance of the house in its original use. The family of Lord Viscount Molesworth was the first family, moving in in 1748. Over the following centuries, the house was occupied by legal people and institutions. With social change in the city and the growing need for urban dwellings, the house was put to other use. By the 20th century it had become a tenement building with 19 families and up to 100 people. The guide showed how the rooms were divided into the 19 family rooms, with obvious family poverty. The house remained as a tenement house until the last family left in 1970.
The tour took about 75 minutes and consisted of a trip around the house and basement with some video clips. There was such a demand for the trip to Henrietta Street that a second tour was arranged on the same day. Almost 40 people attended in two groups on a very windy day on 13th March. The members’ comments after the tour were very positive.