Extracts from Study of A Landed Estate(revised Leaving Cert)

(from Geographical Exploration:Investigating Ireland's heritage. Publ. 2004The heritage Council pp145-146)


Geographical context

Landed estates have played a major role in the development of rural Ireland for centuries. Examples of these houses and parklands can be found in every part of the country. They form a major part of our heritage. These estates were usually developed in association with a local town or village and hence have greatly influenced urban structures, patterns and distribution in Ireland. Even today their impact on local towns and villages through tourism and recreation is notable. A study in this area will help students to relate to material in elective unit 5
(Patterns and Processes in the Human Environment) of the Revised Leaving Certificate.

Aims and hypothesis

.To establish the reasons for the location of the house and its relationship with the town by plotting in the main streets, buildings and topography on a blank map along a walking route;

•To survey the origins of the house's building materials, furniture and fittings;

•To evaluate the role of a landed estate in local tourism;

•To sample the impact of tourism on a landed estate.

Planning: Preparation of work to be carried out

•1:50,000 OS map of the area in question (available in newsagents).

•1:5,000 Town Plan available from libraries or the Town/County Council.

•Maps of the estate and town/village over time showing the gradual development of the area. The local or county library usually keeps such records. In addition books detailing the history of the estate and town may be available there.

•Opening times/seasons, booking arrangements, availability of a guide, entry charge;

.Plan of walking route.

.Drafting an inventory sheet to record origins of building materials, furniture and fittings. .Drafting of traffic survey sheets to record car and pedestrian traffic entering the estate. .Drafting a questionnaire survey form to collect information from tourists and guidelines
for survey methods.

.Camera camcorder to record evidence of economic/recreational activities on the estate.


Collection of Data

Activity 1 involves mapping out the major human and physical features of the town/village to try and

establish the reasons for the location of the house and the layout of the town/village. On our A3 size

blank map of the area we marked in all the important buildings and topographical features along our planned walking route. Heights at various points are marked on the town plan or OS map.

Activity 2 involves sampling the building materials, furniture and fittings of the house to try and establish their local, national or international origins which we felt was important in heritage appreciation. This activity is undertaken on a tour of the interiors of the house. Using an inventory sheet and information from a guide, record the origins of items.

Before beginning, make sure you have the permission of the estate owner/manager. You will need their help to complete the inventory sheet