Restoration of Johnstown Castle, Estate & Gardens – and Creation of a New Visitors’ Destination Development, Johnstown, Co. Wexford, Ireland


Johnstown, Co. Wexford, Ireland


Teagasc - the National Agriculture & Food Development Authority of Ireland




Conservation + Regeneration; Community + Cultural; Public Sector


Area: Circa 55 hectares; Gross floor-Space of Visitor Centre: 1,050m2; Castle Internal: 2,497m2; Carpark: 6,983m2


Officially Opened November 2021

Key Numbers:

900 Years of History - the New Visitor Destination Will Continue the Celebration of the Castle for Generations to Come


Johnstown Castle was built by the Esmonde family who came to County Wexford in 1169 – with the castle, gardens, lakes, and grounds developing over the next nine centuries into the estate that we have today. The walled gardens and hothouses, covering 4 acres, date to 1844 -1851 and retain their early design today. Pathways throughout the grounds meander through the woodland garden and around the lakes. With a history on the site dating back over 850 years, the estate is now owned by Teagasc – and C.J. Falconer & Associates led the Design Time that delivered a rejuvenation project, overseen by Teagasc, in partnership with the Irish Heritage Trust – with investment by Fáilte Ireland and the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine.

Officially opened in November 2021, C.J. Falconer & Associates successfully delivered the substantial €7.5m project at historic Johnstown Castle Estate, Museum, & Gardens, in County Wexford – a gem of Gothic Revival architecture – involving masterplanning of the castle estate, an independent new visitors’ centre & restaurant, and restoration and renovation of Johnstown Castle, enabling its reopening to the public for the first time in decades. The project also included the restoration of a very rare 86 metre servants’ tunnel – believed to be the longest in the country.

The creation of the new Visitor Centre element, included the delivery of a visitor experience/museum, containing kitchen, restaurant, retail, sanitary accommodation and ancillary accommodation, site works and External Hard & Soft Landscaped Areas including Seating Areas, necessary adjustments to the Irish Agricultural Museum building.

The development also included: Carparking, Playground, Woodland Play / Activity Areas, Pet Farm, internal road network and pathways / circulation routes through existing woodlands and associated parklands. Change of Use of Johnstown Castle, a Protected Structure WCC0685, to accommodate tourism, museum, civil ceremonies, public event activities, commercial activities, heritage activities, inclusive of offices, archive, staff facilities and associated uses.

All the above works are in addition to the construction of two new road entrances from the Murntown Road, and the construction of a new internal road network feeding the EPA Offices and Johnstown Castle / Teagasc facilities.