Hastings Farmhouse Restoration

The history
In its over 150-year history, Hastings Farmhouse  has been a family home, stood the test of famine, and played its part in the War of Independence. In 1920, the IRA captured one of the highest ranking British officers in the country, General Cuthbert Henry Tyndal Lucas , and for over one month succeeded in eluding discovery by moving him through a series of safe houses. Early in his captivity, General Lucas was brought to Hastings Farmhouse and held there for at least three nights. Later interviewed about this period, Lucas remarked 'I was treated as a gentleman by gentlemen'. So good was the rapport between Lucas and his guards that an exchange of letters with his heavily  pregnant wife in England was arranged, many of which survive. After some time, it became apparent to the IRA that holding Lucas was no longer an advantage. Having developed such good relations with the General, it was decided to facilitate his escape. 

The house
The Hastings family lived in the house in Tullyvarraga in what is now the modern town of Shannon, Co. Clare. They farmed the surrounding land until c. 1972 after which it fell into disrepair. In 2012, the house was the subject of a conservation project by Dúchas na Sionna, a local heritage group. Since then, the remains of the house have been preserved and the grounds have been transformed into an educational garden. Now, 100 years since General Lucas was held there, Dúchas na Sionna is embarking on a fundraising campaign to fully restore the house for use as a community/ heritage venue. 

The project 
It is intended to restore the house using traditional building techniques and materials. In keeping with the educational ethos of the project, courses will be run for those interested in learning and preserving the knowledge of traditional house building. The house is an unusual surviving example of cob walling in the region, presenting a rare opportunity to revive this ancient skill. 

A short documentary about the house and its unique history is coming soon. 

All donations will go towards the restoration project. Your support is gratefully received.


Dúchas Na Sionna

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