A beech hedge with a timber post and rail fence lines either side of a bell-mouthed, cast-iron electric-gated entrance. Rocketts Castle is accessed via a pea-gravel driveway which is partially lined with lime trees and terminates at a gravel parking area at the front.
Dating from circa 1863, Rocketts Castle occupies a private, south-facing position. It has undergone a full programme of renovation and redecoration to create a fine home fit for the future but retaining many of its original features and period charm.
The reception rooms and bedroom suites are eminently suitable for hosting lavish house parties yet the accommodation is equally suited to being a comfortable and homely family abode.
Notable internal period features include decorative cornicing and ceiling roses, refurbished sash and casement windows (some including the original glass panes) and shutters, detailed Waterford Crystal chandeliers, decorative marble fireplaces (both in the reception rooms and bedrooms), Swarovski door handles on the handmade kitchen units, hardwood flooring and timber paneling. The internal fabrics are also of the highest standard including the carpets, curtains and wallpaper (some of which are a replication of the original designs). The house contains some of the original gilded pelmets.
The accommodation is laid out over two floors.
There is a mains water supply, backed up by a private supply to the accommodation. It has mains electricity and private drainage. There is a recently installed, state-of-the-art 3-phase, zoned gas central heating system, with the control room at basement level. Oil-fired central heating provides back-up. The ground floor has an underground heating system. There are four gas fires in the bedrooms and an Aga in the kitchen.
The house is situated within mature garden grounds laid to lawn and parkland which is interspersed with a variety of mature and young tree species. The orangery opens to a terrace area with beds of shrubs and peaceful and private outlook. Of particular note is the extensive metal edging on the numerous paths throughout the grounds.
There are excellent views from Rocketts Castle over the River Suir and to the surrounding countryside.
The main driveway continues beyond Rocketts Castle in an easterly direction to the front of the Fishing Lodge, where there is a turning circle lined with cordyline trees and parking.
The Fishing Lodge was originally a range of traditional outbuildings serving the estate. It was fully renovated, with particular attention given to the fine masonary both externally and internally. A feature of the property is the spa room including showers, a sauna, steam room and spa. The accommodation is laid out over two floors. The lodge includes five bedrooms, each with an en suite bathroom or shower room.
A boiler room, electrics room and staff WC are within the lodge and have an external access.
The lodge has under floor central heating, a fireplace in the sitting room and an Aga range cooker in the kitchen. It provides spillover accommodation and is used when there are house parties.
WALLED GARDEN AND GARDENER'S COTTAGE
Lying to the south of Rocketts Castle and within the estate parkland is a walled garden. It is accessed by foot from the castle via the monkey puzzle tree-lined avenue, while the main driveway continues beyond the castle to the rear of the walled garden. The walls were restored by the previous owner with the stone sourced from the traditional farm buildings.
The former gardener's cottage forms part of the walled garden. It is of traditional construction and its period design and character are particularly charming. The accommodation is over a single storey and is presently used as a tack room. A parking area is to the front.
The walled garden includes a traditional apple house/cold store, kennels, children's playground, helicopter landing pad, two tennis courts (one floodlit), a hardcore base for parking vehicles, an isolation paddock for livestock, borders extensively stocked with flowering plants and shrubs, fruit trees and lawns. A driveway for vehicles passes through the centre, with large cast iron gates at either end.
The estate is home to the Rocketts Castle Polo Club which hosts an annual three-day tournament and meets two to three times a week between May and September, with the field occupying a spectacular setting at the heart of the estate.
A hunter trial course has been created by the present owners with 18 testing fence jumps and 2 water jumps spread throughout the estate over varying terrain, including wooded tracks and open parkland. The Waterford Hunt meets a number of times each season at Rocketts Castle Estate.
The estate is served by stables and outbuildings which provide storage. A pair of adjoining Dutch barns with lean-to's are situated immediately to the south of the walled garden and are accessed off the tarmacadam estate road. They form the functional core of the estate and are in five-bays of steel construction with corrugated roofs and cladding, block walls and a concrete base. The buildings include a hay store, workshop, machinery store, feed store, dog kennel and 8 loose boxes. There is hot and cold water and an electricity supply.
ROCKETTS CASTLE TOWER
A round castle, understood to date from 1212, lies at the east of the estate on the edge of the River Suir. It was designed for defensive purposes and to monitor any boats travelling inland on the river.
With four levels, the structure includes a number of fortification features from the medieval period including a cross-shaped arrow slit, clockwise stair and bartizans. There is an electricity supply.
Lying within a ring-fenced block, the land at Rocketts Castle Estate is bound by the River Suir on the east and the R680 – Waterford to Carrick-on-Suir Road – on the west. The land lies between 5 feet above sea level on the eastern boundary and rises gently to about 15 feet above sea level on the western boundary.
The topography is mostly level and a feature is the excellent access throughout the estate, including three entrances from the public road and a network of internal roads and tracks.
The tillage land is generally free-draining and is laid out in fields of a good size and shape for modern agriculture. The depth and quality of the soil make it capable of growing daffodils, root crops, cereals and excellent grass swards, and the tillage land is a key asset of the estate. The permanent pasture is mainly situated on the east of the estate and is in smaller enclosures, which are bound by trees, providing shelter for livestock. The tillage land is let on an annual basis to a number of local farmers.
About 38 acres of land situated on the northern boundary and with its own road access is currently zoned within the Portlaw Local Area Plan 2014-2020 as land reserved for future sustainable industrial development.
The woods at Rocketts Castle Estate are mainly on the western boundary, providing shelter from prevailing elements. Extending to about 59 acres in total, they comprise a variety of mature species and were understood to have been strategically planted to create a driven pheasant shoot. The present owners have planted a number of trees on the estate, including the Monkey Puzzle avenue and a Chestnutlined path.
The estate enjoys a wide array of colour throughout the year from the diverse range of plants, shrubs and trees.
SPORT AND AMENITY
In addition to equestrianism, the estate offers varied sport and amenity. With two strategically-positioned release pens on the estate and mature woods, there is an opportunity to run a low- round family shoot. The shoot can be augmented by duck flighting and snipe shooting, with a lake and three ponds on the estate.
A slipway provides access from the estate to the River Suir for boating, fishing and water-skiing.
From Waterford City, travel west on the N25. After about 10 kilometres and upon reaching a roundabout, take the R680 (third exit) signposted for Carrick-on-Suir. Travel on the R680 for about 8 kilometres where the entrance to Rocketts Castle Estate is on the right.
The Eircode for the property is X91 VW73.