Townley Hall Open Day 7th June 2015
The Bursar of Townley Hall, Dermot Conway, opening the event in the Library.
The Very Reverend Robert Townley delivering his talk which traced the history of the Townley Balfour family through a series of portraits spanning four centuries..
Prof. Mark Baily, Director of the Armagh Observatory spoke about Johnston's observatory design, the man who commissioned it, Archbishop Robinson, and the work that continues to be carried out there today.
Delegates Adam Hall, Richard McLaughlin, Fernando Girbal and Dorothy Jones enjoying a coffee break between talks.
Judith Hill delivered a talk posing the question; What sort of a Gothic revival architect was Francis Johnston?.
Speakers Judith Hill, Mark Baily and V.Rev.Robert Townley with the Bursar, Dermot Conway (second from right).
Dearbhail Finnegan and Robin Slater performed pieces by Carolan at a musical interval after lunch.
Delegates viewing the Francis Johnston Exhibition in the Billard Room. On loan for the day were original portraits of the Townley Balfour family spanning three centuries.
The Francis Johnston Exhibition in the Billard Room.
Speakers Mark Price and Livia Hurley in conversation in the Rotunda.
Livia Hurley's talk was entitled; Blayney Balfour of Townley Hall and the culture of eighteenth-century improvements at Slane, County Meath.
Mark Price spoke on the subject of; Geometry and the Architectural Drawing featuring examples by Francis Johnston from the Irish Architectural Archive.
Michael Kavanagh giving a guided tour of the Francis Johnston Exhibition.
Brendan Kiernan, in the Rotunda, while giving a tour of the house.
Many thanks to all the speakers, organisers and some ninety delegates for making the first Townley Hall Open Day a great success on 7th June. The one day symposium was an exploration of the architectural and social history of Townley Hall and aspects of the work of its architect, Francis Johnston (1760 to 1829).
The symposium venue was Townley Hall, built between 1794 and 1798 for Blayney Townley Balfour III and his family. The house is widely considered to be Francis Johnston’s domestic masterpiece and has been described as the perfect neo-classical house.
There were five talks, a Francis Johnston exhibition, guided tours of the house as well as a music event.
The speakers were the Very Reverend Robert Townley, Armagh, Professor Mark Bailey, Director Armagh Observatory, Judith Hill MA History of Art (Cantab.), Dip. Arch. (RIBA), Livia Hurley Dip.Arch B.arch Sc MLitt and Mark Price B.Arch MRIAI.
On display was an exhibition exploring a selection of Francis Johnston’s most significant projects through drawings, engravings and archive photographs. The material for the exhibition was drawn from the collections of the Irish Architectural Archive, The National Library of Ireland, The Ulster Museum, The Royal Society of Antiquaries Ireland, An Post GPO Museum, The Royal Institute of Architects of Ireland as well as the Country Life Photographic Library.
A special word of thanks to the The School of Philosophy and Economic Science who hosted the event.