Brief History of The Celbridge Manor Hotel
In October 1729, 12 days before his death, the Right Honourable William Connolly Esq. of Castletown made provision in his will for the construction of a school in or near the town of Celbridge for the reception of 40 children for maintenance and education. His bequest for the foundation of the school was in accord with the then current proclivity of the wealthier classes in Ireland to establish, or at least aid and support such schools in various parts of the country.
The right Honourable William Connolly Esq. nephew and heir to his Excellency, donated fifty acres of land for the building, which was to stand in a 400 sq.ft. court and be surrounded by a wall and adorned with a tower and clock. Construction on a building to house 40 orphans started in 1732 by architect Thomas Burgh who also built the Royal Barracks and the library building at Trinity College in Dublin.
The aim of the original charity school was to rescue children of the “poor natives from ignorance and superstition” and instruct them in “the English tongue, in manners and in the Protestant faith”.
It is assumed the building was complete in 1737, although there appears to be no published reference to it until 1788 when records show there were 17 children in the school and enrolment was confirmed to girls.
It continued to operate as a school until the 70’s when it was converted into a hotel.
Today the Celbridge Manor Hotel is carefully restored and refurbished to reflect the elegance of the Great Irish Houses of its era.