top of page

Glenlohane History

Glenlohane House

Glenlohane Country House was built by Desmond’s and Gordon's antecedents in 1741. Your hosts, Desmond, Melanie and their son Gordon and his wife Angela represent the 9th and 10th generations of the same family living at Glenlohane since its inception. Surrounded by terraced lawns overlooking a park like setting, the house was built by John Sharp, of Mount Conway, near Cork City in 1741. Mount Conway still stands.

Early records show the Sharp family in the parish of St. Katherine, Dublin in 1535. As a prominent Quaker family that became eminently successful in the woolen industry in the mid 1600’s, they also built Roundwood House in Co Laois at the same time that Glenlohane was being built in Co Cork. Anthony Sharp was reputed to employ 500 people at the time, which would have made him one of Ireland’s largest employers. For Dublin, that is a sizeable concern even by today’s standards! As sizeable land owners, the Bolsters have been within 5-6 miles of Glenlohane since Elizabethan times and John Hawkes Bolster of Egmont House, Churchtown, Co Cork married Sarah Sharp of Glenlohane in the early 1800’s. The house was extended to its present size shortly thereafter. We now have the opportunity to share our family’s heritage by offering guests Irish Country House Accommodation in the heart of the Co Cork countryside.


There are family dogs and a cat in the background and animals play a large part of life at Glenlohane. Less than a quarter of a mile away, and still on the farm, is an historic 1600's Self Catering Cottage that can be rented on a weekly basis or for months at a time. Apart from farm animals like cows and sheep, there are cats and dogs, fantail pigeons and bantam hens in the traditional stable yard.

Whether it be at Glenlohane for B&B or Glenlohane Cottage for self catering, staying is for the discerning visitor who wishes to learn more about Ireland’s history and culture through personal contact with the owners. One is also well positioned for sightseeing throughout the Scenic Southwest of the country.


Kanturk has always been considered the primary town in the Barony of Duhallow which derives its name from the confluence of the rivers Alua and Dalua in the town. Baronies vary in size but might be approximately 100 sq miles and encompass several towns and villages. In Gaelic times, the MacCarthy Clan were considered the ‘Princes of Duhallow’ and, through alliances with smaller clans and intermarriage, they ruled virtually everything from Mallow west to the Atlantic. Under English influence, the system changed and the Earls of Egmont, the Perceval family, became responsible for Duhallow. Roads and schools were built. The main bridge in Kanturk was built in 1760 and many places in the town still carry their memory such as Egmont Place and Perceval Street. As a prospering market town, the economy is supported by agriculture and the present population is about 1,800.

At around 1600, Donagh MacCarthy of Lohort Castle, Cecilstown, near Kanturk, started building his large castle outside Kanturk. From comparison of the architecture of the two castles, he obviously decided that he wanted to live in a building more extensive than the fortified Norman Keep of Lohort. Kanturk Castle is our earliest example of Rennaisance style architecture in the area. With its Great Hall and sleeping towers at each corner, it was really to be more like a fortified house. Sadly however, that was not to be as The Privy Council decided that it was too large and threatening. In 1608, troops were sent to stop the building and all the slates from the roof were thrown in the nearby stream. From that day on, that part of Kanturk has been known as Bluepool. Kanturk Castle is open to the public. No admission charge.

bottom of page