Cork Culture Night – September 23rd, 2022

- Posted on: 02/09/2022 -

Experience an Array of Culture in Cork!

Culture Night is a national moment, an annual all-island public event. Brought to you by the Arts Council, it celebrates our diversity of culture, creativity and the arts while promoting the belief that rich and varied culture is alive, treasured and nurtured in people’s lives every day. Over 1.1 million people engaged with Culture Night in 2021.

Culture Night invites everyone, everywhere, on one wonderful night to discover and celebrate all that our culture is today.

Culture is something that is steeped within the tradition of the Vienna Woods Hotel.  Considering this, we have decided to explore the links between Corks Vienna Woods Hotel and the local culture.

Davis Ducart originally built Vienna Woods to a Regency design in 1765 as Lota Lodge on a large parcel of land surrounding Lota Beg. 

The history and times of The Vienna Woods Country House Hotel is particularly connected to the Crawford family.

Sharmon Crawford rebuilt the house in 1903 after a fire.  His uncle was William Horatio Crawford, who gave his name to many of the institutions of the city including the Crawford College of Art and the Art gallery formerly incorporated in it. The Crawford family were originally Scottish, hailing from Aidland, near Dalry in Ayrshire, and travelled to Ireland in 1618. William Crawford II came to Cork in 1792 and founded the brewing firm Beamish & Crawford along with William Beamish. The brewery was successful from the beginning, and the company quickly became the largest brewer in the country, employing nearly five hundred people in 1807.

William Horatio Crawford was a remarkable gardener, specialising in the nurturing of new, rare, and tender shrubs and trees in his house in Blackrock, where he developed what was described as a perfect arboretum.  It was there for example that the Himalayan Magnolia Campbell flowered for the first time in Ireland.  It was from Blackrock also that he bequeathed hybrids of his Brownea species to Kew Gardens and the Botanical Gardens in Glasnevin.

Many other culturally significant buildings in the city have been moulded from our cultural connections. Mahon Point Shopping Centre, a modern tourist attraction in Cork, boasts its own connection to the Crawfords and The Vienna Woods Country House Hotel. William Crawford II built the house the 'Lakelands' on the site where the shopping centre now stands today. If you visit Mahon Point Shopping Centre, look out for a group of large monkey puzzle trees on the site, the last remaining sign of the existence of the former gardens and house.

William Horatio Crawford was also a major funder of the building of St. Fin Barre’s Cathedral, which was designed by William Burges and consecrated in 1870. The cathedral is built of Cork limestone and the interior of Bath stone, and the walls are lined with red Cork marble. Some of the best stained glass in Ireland can be seen inside, and it has been remarked that St. Fin Barre's may be the most fluid French Neo-Gothic style cathedral in western Europe.

For more information on Cork Culture night visit:

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