New Castle Friends Website

We are delighted to announce the launch of , a website dedicated to our volunteers and friends.  Please check in regularly to see the news on whats happening!

We value our volunteers at Charleville and celebrate them every day!

Learn more about Charleville Castle history, architecture, projects and of course, ghost stories by visiting us…

It is dedicated to our Volunteers and friends of the casle and it’s purpose is to communicate with them on our projects, our aims, ambitions and dreams.

All ideas are taken on board and most are brought to fruition because, without our volunteers, we would not survive.

Hope to see you soon!

Tá áthas orainn a fhógairt go bhfuil an seoladh, láithreán gréasáin tiomanta chunár n-oibrithe deonacha agus a chairde. Déan seiceáil i rialta chun an nuacht ar cad tarlú!

Is mór againn ár n-oibrithe deonacha ag Ráth agus ceiliúradh a dhéanamh orthu gach lá!

Ensemble Avalon

Tullamore Gramophone Society Presents Ensemble Avalon Wednesday 26 October 2011, 8pm, at Charleville Castle

Tickets €20 at Heartbeat City, Tullamore


Ensemble Avalon

Ensemble Avalon

Ensemble Avalon is a fresh and dynamic piano trio featuring three of Ireland’s finest internationally accomplished soloists and chamber musicians. Since their inaugural concert together in the summer of 2006 the trio have performed concerts, tours and series in Ireland, Italy and UK and enjoy regular broadcasts on radio and television. Originating from both Northern and Southern Ireland, all three members are 1st-class honours laureates of prestigious colleges, they have studied intensively in Ireland, the UK, France and the US between them and currently live in three different countries. The three members of Ensemble Avalon each enjoy an active solo and chamber career and they have created Ensemble Avalon as a means to discovering and performing new and existing piano trio repertoire together. The trio were delighted to be invited to join Music Network’s Musicwide artist roster following the success of their February 2007 tour, which was generously funded in part by Music Network’s Performance and Touring Award.

A well-received performance at the Hugh Lane Gallery in Dublin during Ensemble Avalon’s February 2007 tour led to an ongoing relationship commencing with the repeat invitation to artistically direct and perform a series of concerts at the Gallery in November and December 2007. The trio chose to title the project ‘An American and Paris’, presenting a contrasting selection of French and American piano trios throughout the critically acclaimed series. Three further performances at the Gallery followed in early 2009 as part of a pilot scheme exploring the need for a resident ensemble at Trinity College Dublin. The hugely successful project has since been refined and expanded to create a new and exciting residency at TCD, with the Hugh Lane Gallery and the National Concert Hall as active partners. The residency is to include didactic and outreach elements alongside performances of established and new piano trio repertoire and is expected to launch in early 2011.

Looking back over the calendar, Ensemble Avalon have enjoyed a number of national concert tours featuring performances from Belfast to West Cork, taking in the National Concert Hall en route, and are currently planning their next tour for January 2011. RTÉ’s Lyric fm and Ensemble Avalon are in ongoing collaboration on an extended recording and broadcast project – 2008 encompassed the ‘American and Paris’ series, the Avalon Winter Chamber Festival in its entirety and their debut CD. Recorded in St. Peter’s Church in Drogheda with producer Jonathan Allen of Abbey Road in London, the debut CD features Ensemble Avalon’s ‘sunlit playing’ (the Strad) in a selection of piano trios by Bax, Bernstein and Beethoven. ‘In the front rank of modern versions on disc’ (Classical Music Magazine), the resulting CD is now on sale through the RTÉ website and through as well as in shops around the country.

The Ensemble Avalon Winter Chamber Festival is an ongoing annual event taking place in Wexford over a winter weekend. Each year the festival follows a different musical theme and chosen composers are highlighted in performances of chamber classics and more unusual works, including collaborations with handpicked guest artists from Ireland and abroad. With a hugely diverse repertoire ranging from Haydn to Piazzolla already in place, the trio are committed to supporting contemporary music and are particularly delighted to have given the world premieres of specially commissioned works ‘A Little Blues’ by Irish composer Ronan Guilfoyle (2008 Festival) and of ‘Para Lennie’ by Dublin-based Ariel Hernandez (2009 Festival). Ensemble Avalon will announce details of the 2010 Festival very soon.

Ensemble Avalon gratefully acknowledge the generous ongoing support of Music Network, the Arts Council of Ireland, Fáilte Ireland, RTÉ’s Lyric fm and Music for Wexford.

A 1789 masterpiece by Matthew William Peters, rediscovered and restored

In the last few months a masterpiece that once hung in Charleville Castle has gone on display in the Beaverbrook Gallery in New Brunswick, Canada, described as a “priceless relic and touchstone to history,” it is a 1789 masterpiece by Matthew William Peters portraying the christening of Princess Elizabeth as described in the last scene of the last act of William Shakespeare’s last play, Henry VIII.

Matthew William Peters portrays the christening of Princess Elizabeth as described in the last scene of the last act of William Shakespeare’s last play, Henry VIII.

Such an important part of history, not only for the castle but in general, was nearly lost due to vandalism and neglect. It is very fortunate that Graham Gordon has had the will and resources to spend the time to restore this painting back to it’s former glory rather than leaving it to crumble or cutting out sections of the painting to restore individually.

We hope some day that this painting, or even a replica, will grace Charleville Castle with it’s majesty once more.

More information about the paintings road to restoration can be found on the Beaver Brook Art Gallery website –

Volunteers a huge success in Castlepalooza

Caharleville Castle Volunteers

On Bank Holiday weekend 2011, Charleville Castle hosted Castlpalooza, one of the best music festivals in Ireland.  Over the course of the weekend, almost 200 volunteers or “Paloozateers” gave up their spare time to ensure that a good time was had by all and the castle grounds were kept clean and tidy.

Without our volunteers, events like Castlepalooza would not be possible and with that thought in mind, we would like to take this opportunity to thank you all!


O’Molloy Clan Rally 2011

Firceall 12th August to 13th August 2011


The O’Molloy Association has a full weekend of events planned with something for everyone. You do not have to hold the Molloy name to participate. In this area of Firceall, most families have some Molloy connection as the O’Molloy ruled the area for centuries. A Mr Molloy founded the Distilleries in Tullamore that made Tullamore Dew famous. No clan would be complete without a Chieftain! The present Chieftain of the O’Molloy Clan is Frances Molloy Berry who resides in Durrow in the north of Firceall. We are calling all members and friends to come together once again to celebrate our heritage and forge and renew family links. A programme of events has been set out, which will include lectures by a guest speaker, and a tour of locations of particular connection to the O’Molloy clan.

The O’Molloys are descended from the famous Niall of the Nine Hostages, High King of Ireland in the fifth century. Following the battle of Druim Deirg in the year 515, the descendants of Niall established control over extensive lands including Firceall, which stretched from north of Tullamore as far south as the edge of Birr. Ownership of these lands remained with the O’Molloy’s until the first half of the seventeenth century, when the area was subjected to the plantations of James I and Cromwell.

Firceall means ‘Men of the Churches’, due to the great number of ancient churches in the area such as Durrow, Drumcullen, Killyon, Kilcormac, Lynally and Rathline. Firceall was comprised of the baronies of Eglish, Ballyboy and Ballycowan. Surrounded by strong warlike septs such as the O’Carroll’s of Ely, the MacCoughlan’s of Delvin Eathra and the O’Connor’s of Offaly, the O’Molloy territory was the scene of regular conflict over the centuries with neighbour and Crown forces alike. The ruins of a number of important castles are found here, such as Broughal, Eglish, Ballindown, Dowras, Le Porte near Whigsborough, Kiltubrid, Rathmackilduffe (Rath), Ballyboy, Derrydolny, Rathline, Rathrobin, Garbally, Cully, Killooly and Pallas.


For more information please see the O’Molloy Clan Association website

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