Drenagh House just outside Limavady is a very elegant stately home set within a large demesne. Historic home of the McCausland family. Robert McCausland was agent of William Conolly who purchased the Limavady Estate from the Phillip’s family. Conolly, at one time Speaker of the Irish Parliament, acquired his riches buying and selling estates. McCausland erected the first house several hundred yards south east of this building in the 1730s. This was demolished to make way for the present house in the 1830′s. The building is very elegant and comands its surrounding landscape.
While Drumachose Church became an interesting ruin within the Drenagh estate, the view from ruin to house is equally worth seeing. In the distance through the trees is the south facade of the main house built by Charles Lanyon in the 1830′s.
Old Drumahose Chuch is a romantic ruin set high above a steep curve on the main road from Limavady to Coleraine. It is reputed to have been built on the site of a much earlier foundation in the 13th century. From 1197 to 1315 the ‘manor of the Roo'; was held by the Anglo-Normans and the chuch is thus likely to be a Norman construction. This probably explains why it is much bigger than most medieval churches in the area. It was used until the Ulster Plantation when a replacement church was erected in 'Newtown Limavady'. Cromwell is said to have blasted the south wall with his cannons ( OS Memoirs). The church was brought within the demesne of Drenagh House in the 1860s when the old road was rerouted and the line of this former road can still be seen. It is a very atmospheric place.
Marks of Time
Sketches of buildings in the North West and further afield with a little information about their history.