What is the Irish Heritage Trust?
The Irish Heritage Trust is an independent registered charity which manages and cares for some of Ireland’s most prestigious house, gardens and museums.
Its properties include Strokestown Park House, Gardens & National Famine Museum; Fota House, Arboretum & Gardens; and Johnstown Castle, Estate, Museum & Gardens.
The Trust provides for their conservation and maintenance, and it ensures that they are available for members of the public to enjoy and appreciate in perpetuity.
It is also helping them towards financial sustainability, so they can make positive contributions to Irish culture and their communities.
What does the Irish Heritage Trust do at Strokestown Park?
- We work tirelessly to conserve and preserve the fabric of the house and the history held within its walls, as well as the gardens and woodlands.
- We take care of Strokestown Park’s visitor experience and education programmes.
- We run a volunteer programme, which connects Strokestown Park House with the local community in lots of important ways.
- And we support wider access to the compelling famine documents archive, through which Strokestown Park contributes to international study of the Great Irish Famine.
In 2015, the Irish Heritage Trust took responsibility for the property with the help of private philanthropic support from individual Directors of the Westward Group. Since then, it has been working on ambitious plans for the new, state-of-the-art National Famine Museum, which will open at Strokestown Park in 2022.
Object news event
Funded by Fáilte Ireland and Westward Holdings Ltd, in partnership with the Irish Heritage Trust, the new National Famine Museum will showcase material from the archive and interpret the story of the Great Irish Famine in Ireland for a whole new generation of visitors and researchers.
Plans for the future
Over the coming years, through major funding programmes and partnerships, we will carry out further work to conserve Strokestown Park and enhance its role in rural regeneration. Our aim is to fulfil Strokestown Park’s potential as a local amenity, a national asset, and an international resource for learning about the Great Irish Famine.
We already working on bringing the house and community together through our new volunteering programme and successful events, such as the Plant Fair and Family Féte, which are bringing new audiences to the house and gardens.
The Mahon family owned the estate for over 300 years. Dad’s family were tenants, then he bought it and now the Trust is running the estate, so it is back in the hands of the people. The whole thing has gone full circle.Caroilin Callery – Director of the Irish heritage Trust