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Historic Building Details

HB Ref No:
HB02/05/006 A

Extent of Listing:
House, garden wall, gates, gate piers, boundary walls.

Date of Construction:
1780 - 1799

Address :
Knockan House 9 Killunaght Road Dungiven Co Londonderry BT47 4TU


Survey 2:

Date of Listing:
28/03/1975 00:00:00

Date of De-listing:

Current Use:

Former Use

Conservation Area:

Industrial Archaeology:





OS Map No:

IG Ref:
C6471 0641

Owner Category


Exterior Description And Setting

A 2½ storey house 5 bay wide, gabled with 1½ storey wings also gabled, all slated. The S E and entrance elevation has a central 6 fielded panel door with semi-circular fanlight over without subdivision. The door has narrow pilasters on each side and cornice under fanlight. On each side of the door 2no, 12 pane sliding sash windows with low sandstone cills and sash boxes exposed. Above 5no, 12 pane sliding sash windows at first floor directly over openings below. The projecting eaves, returned a short length on each gable, is carried on longish block dentil brackets and supporting metal gutter. Walls harled but for the most part covered in creeper. The short 1½ storey wings, set back a little from the plane of the main block, are one bay long, each with 1no, 12 pane sliding sash window with cill level almost at floor level. All roofs are finished in natural slate with a chimney on each gable. The N E gable has a rear porch projection with panelled back door (access from farmyard) on the S E side. The wing gable has 2no, 9 pane sliding sash windows to the attic floor and likewise the main block gable has 2no, 12 pane sliding sash windows. The wing barges are asymmetrical as the N W slope continues down to cover a rear passage. This slope has a cement barge. The S W gable has French windows leading to a small terrace and overlooking the S W enclosed and secluded garden. Above 2no, 9 pane sliding sash windows to attic floor and the main block gable has 2no, 12 pane D/H S/S windows. Again these S W gables are smothered in creeper, most picturesque. The rear and N W elevation has an irregular arrangement of windows and some single and 2 storey shallow returns. The shallow returns do not overshadow the staircase window which is 12 pane sliding sash. Walls are harled, some recently repaired around the back returns. There is a dormer window to the S W with French doors. Knockan House enjoys a pleasant secluded site, particularly since the award winning realignment of the Feeny Road. Nearby there is the Owenbeg river and Knockan bridge (HB02/05/007) with its 4no. Arches. It has a fine garden with good variety of mature trees and shrubs and a good lawn. The garden is occasionally open to the public. Some of the trees are rare, weeping beech, holly, the former 300 years old and the latter some 200 years. A random rubble wall of field stones bounds one side of the S W garden which the owner states is 17th cent. Adjacent to the house on the N W side are the farm outbuilding (HB02/05/006B). A straight run of gravel avenue leads from the Feeny Road to the principal façade. Entrance gates in decorative metal are set back a little from road verge with clipped hedge on either side. To the rear of the house is a single storey outbuilding, its present feature being the large open brick fireplace with irons. This had been used as an outside kitchen and laundry.


Not Known

Historical Information

The preceding family members of the present owners have been in residence on this site since the 17th cent. The townland of Knockan was held in 1641 by Rory McShane O’Cahan but afterwards passed to the Carey family and after 1743 sold to Adam Downing, son of a Dublin Solicitor. At the time of the O.S. Memoirs the proprietor was Captain Nesbit Downey (Downing). A house and outbuildings are shown on the O.S. Map 1830 but appears smaller than the present arrangement. O.S. Map 1830 rev 1856 shows the house extended and with the N E wing. It is probably between 1830 and 1856 that the the house was considerably renovated and enlarged and the main block took on its present form. Later the S W wing was added. The single storey outbuilding behind appears on both maps. The house, after this, remains unchanged until the enlargement of the drawing room and the forming of the dormer window in the late 20th cent. The O.S. Memoir suggests that the main body of the house was built in 1789 (“It was the year in which the Bastille was razed, but the eastern wing dates from the reign of James I”! Hist. Garden No. L/045 References Primary Sources 1. Simington, The Civil Survey, 1654-1656, Donegal, Derry & Tyrone p.210 2. O.S. Map 1830 Londonderry sh. 30 3. O.S. Map 1830 Rev. 1856 Londonderry sh. 30 4. O.S. Map 1830 Rev. 1905 Londonderry sh. 30 5. O.S. Memoirs of Ireland, Parishes of Co Londonderry X, 1833-34, 1838 Ed by Angelique Day and Patrick McWilliams Q.U.B. p. 30, 119 6. John McCloskey, Statistical Reports of Six Derry Parishes 1821 p.73, 74 Secondary Sources 1. Munn, Notes on the Place Names of the Parishes and Townlands of the County of Londonderry. p. 76 2. Lewis, A Topographical Dictionary of Ireland. p. 176 3. Rowan, Buildings of Ireland, North West Ulster. p. 294, 295

Criteria for Listing

Architectural Interest

A. Style B. Proportion C. Ornamentation D. Plan Form I. Quality and survival of Interior J. Setting K. Group value

Historic Interest

X. Local Interest


A good example of a late Georgian house, which has been added to in the 19th cent. to good architectural effect. A Georgian gentleman’s residence, set in a pleasant landscaped garden in splendid countryside. The gardens as well as the house is of good quality and appearance.

General Comments

Date of Survey

21 July 2000