Breaking: Thurles castle set for €2 million refurbishment after purchase is confirmed

Noel Dundon


Noel Dundon


Sir Timothy Maher

The new owner of Black Castle, Thurles Sir Timothy Maher, pictured with his wife Dina and Deputy Michael Lowry at the entrance to the castle.

Historic Black Castle, home of Lady Thurles has been purchased by a Boherlahan financier.

The former ‘Black Castle’, once home of Lord Viscount Thomas Butler and his wife Lady Viscountess Elizabeth Butler (alias Poyntz), situated west of Liberty Square, in Thurles, Co. Tipperary has been sold.

And, the new owner is budgeting for a €2 million spend on the historic building to restore it to its former magnificent glory, with the view to living in the building.
The privately-owned building had been offered for sale in May of last year by the Kenny family relatives of the Late Mr Billy Maher (Victualler), through the offices of Sean Spain Auctioneers & Valuers. The hugely historical building, in vacant possession, has now been purchased by Sir Timothy Maher (Knight of Innisfallen) (Chairman & Chief Financial Officer (CFO), of Timothy Maher Finance) and his wife, American born Dr Phyllis Maher (Chief Executive Officer (CEO), of Timothy Maher Finance). The couple are highly well respected in antiquity and fine art circles. 

"I must have viewed over 400 castles before a chance meeting with Michael Lowry at a petrol pump  in Cashel alerted me to the sale of the Black Castle in Thurles. We took one look at it and decided to try and buy it. We are very excited about this and cannot wait to get started," Timothy Maher told The Tipperary Star.

Deputy Lowry pictured with Sir Timothy Maher inside the Black Castle, which has just been purchased.

Mrs Phyllis Maher has already undertaken extensive investigations on the site and has a very clear vision of her plans for the project which will include the gutting and refurbishment of the house which opens into Liberty Square and the castle itself.

"There is so much work to be done but the structure is in very good condition really and we are determined to remain faithful to the original building with any work we do. There have been a lot of additions to the buildings down through the years and we hope to open up the whole courtyard area and re-pave it appropriately," she said.

DH Ryan Architects have now been employed to undertake a feasibility study of the site and its associated buildings and to prepare a development brief for the purchasers. Solicitor Mr James J. Meagher (Thomas F. Griffin Parnell St, Thurles) has been retained to deal with all aspects of the sites transfer.

Deputy Michael Lowry has forecast exciting times ahead over the next 16 months for the town of Thurles. "This  historical and iconic building, which was falling into dereliction, will rise once more to enhance our westerly horizon.  It should be noted that the building may have become known as the Black castle in the past due to it appearing as a black silhouette against the setting sun. However, I remain confident that the new developers, through their love of history and antiquities, will give Thurles a sense of even greater pride in the months ahead as necessary work is completed.”