Belfast Telegraph

For sale: Former Tyrone school that had poteen still and resident donkey

Fallow Lodge in Co Tyrone was once a church school
Fallow Lodge in Co Tyrone was once a church school
Fallow Lodge in Co Tyrone was once a church school
Fallow Lodge in Co Tyrone was once a church school
Fallow Lodge in Co Tyrone was once a church school
Fallow Lodge in Co Tyrone was once a church school
Fallow Lodge in Co Tyrone was once a church school
Donna Deeney

By Donna Deeney

A former Church of Ireland school which was renovated as a cottage has been put on the market.

Estate agents for Fallow Lodge near Fivemiletown in Co Tyrone are looking for offers from £129,950.

The two-bedroom property on the Mullaghfad Road is steeped in history - it was once referred to in the House of Lords during a discussion about rural schools.

It is being sold by the current owner Keith Mathews.

Mr Mathews said he and his family cannot fully enjoy Fallow Lodge because much of their time is spent in Sweden.

"We bought the cottage in 2015 and restored it completely, but unfortunately we live in Armagh and spend one week here and one week in Sweden, so we are not getting the use of the cottage we would like," he said.

"My two sons and myself did a lot of the bulk work, but called in tradesmen to do what we couldn't, but I designed the layout.

Sign In

"I know the house was originally a Church of Ireland school in 1836 that had 70 pupils on the register, but I can't imagine how they all fitted in.

"I know it was mentioned in the Houses of Parliament during talks about rural schools, but some time after that it went into the hands of a local man who was a bit of a character.

"It was famous for being the poteen house in the area, but as far as I am told this man drank a lot of his own produce and one night he was so drunk he set the place on fire.

"The local constable was called, but I think he was one of the man's best customers so not much was done," he added.

"Apparently this man kept his donkey inside the house, which used to hang its head out the front window watching people go past.

"When I bought the house I found part of the an old poteen still in one of the sheds, so there must be some truth in the tale."

Mr Mathews said the house and its idyllic location will provide its new owner with the best of all worlds.

"The house is off-grid, electricity comes from a generator and solar power and the internet is provided by satellite," he explained.

"But every time we come up here it is like stepping into another world.

"The nearest house is almost a mile away, so when you step outside all you can hear is the sound of nature - the breeze in the trees and the running water of the wee river that runs beside the house.

"This house is going to appeal to so many people, those who want to escape from the hustle and bustle of everyday life, but it will also appeal to someone who wants to develop the site for tourism."

The cottage is being sold by Watters Property Sales.

It comprises an open plan entrance hall, lounge and kitchen, with mezzanine bedroom. There is also a downstairs bedroom, along with a study and modern bathroom.

Estate agent Stephen Watters said that the property has proved a favourite with viewers.

"This is a truly unique opportunity for those seeking complete peace and tranquillity," he added.

"We are confident that this little gem will be snapped up by one very lucky buyer."

Belfast Telegraph

Popular

From Belfast Telegraph