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Bloomfield, Benjamin

  • Person
  • 1768-1846

Benjamin Bloomfield was born on 13 April 1798, son of John Bloomfield, Lieutenant of the grenadiers and Miss Waller. In 1797 he married Harriet Douglas of Suffolk and they moved to Ireland soon after. They had one son, John Arthur Douglas Bloomfield, born in 1802, and a daughter, Charlotte who died in 1828. He commanded a battery of artillery at Vinegar Hill during the 1798 Rebellion. During his long military career he held the following posts: G.C.B. and G.C.H., a Lieutenant-General in the army, Colonel- Commandant of the Royal Horse Artillery, Governor of Fort Charles, Jamaica, and a Privy Councillor. He held the distinguished and confidential offices of Clerk, Marshal, Private Secretary and Privy Purse to H.R.H. the Prince of Wales, afterwards King George IV. He was nine years Envoy Extraordinary and Minister Plenipotentiary to the Court of Sweden, and subsequently Commandant at Woolwich.

Lord Bloomfield died in Portman Square, Woolwich on 15 August 1846 and his remains were taken to Loughton House.

Bury, Charles Kenneth Howard-

  • Person
  • 1883-1963

Charles Kenneth Howard-Bury was born in London to Captain Kenneth Howard-Bury and his wife Lady Emily Alfreda Julia Bury, youngest daughter of Charles William Bury, 3rd earl of Charleville. He was educated privately at Charleville Castle, at Eton College and at the Royal Military College at Sandhurst. He joined the 60th Rifles in 1904 and was posted to India, where he began his life-long love of exploration and mountaineering. He climbed the Tien Shen mountains in Tibet in 1912 and kept a travel diary. A book 'The Mountains of Heaven' from this diary was published in 1990.

In 1912 he inherited Belvedere House, Mullingar, County Westmeath, from his cousin Charles Brinsley Marlay. From this time, Charleville Castle ceased to be used by the family.

He resumed active service during the First World War, commanding the 7th and 9th battalions of the King's Royal Rifles. He served at Arras, the Somme, Passchendale and Ypres where he was captured and remained a prisoner of war at Furstenburg until 1919. Following the war, he returned to mountaineering and led the first expedition to Everest which surveyed the route to the summit for future climbers.

Following the successful expedition to Everest, Howard-Bury was a well-known figure and entered politics. He was MP for Bilston (South Wolverhampton) in 1922 and MP for CHelmsford between 1926 and 1931, when he retired after inheriting Charleville Estate on the death of his mother. During the Second World War, he was appointed an assistant commissioner for the British Red Cross. During this time he met Rex Beaumont, an actor with the Royal Shakespeare Company and at that time in the RAF during the war. They became close friends and together renovated Belvedere House where they lived for the rest of their lives. In 1948, Howard-Bury auctioned most of the contents of Charleville Castle including furniture and paintings.

Howard-Bury died in 1963. He bequeathed Charleville etsate to his cousin, Major William Bacon Hutton Bury, the grandson of the 4th earl of Charleville's elder sister, Lady Katherine Beaujolois Bury and hr husband Edmund Bacon Hutton. He bequeathed Belvedere to Rex Beaumont.

Garvey, George

  • Person
  • 1794-1879

George Garvey is best known as a land agent in King's County/Offaly in the mid-1800s and during the Great Famine. His first career, however, was as a military man and he served as a captain in the Royal Navy from 1807, with victories in battles at Helgoland (1807), Cadiz (1811) and Genoa (1814). Garvey's father was also an officer in the British army and was killed at the British capture of St Lucia in the West Indies in 1796. After a short but distinguished service, Garvey retired to Thornvale, Moneygall, King's County , near to Loughton, which was the estate of Major Pepper, his wife's uncle. He was given his first job as a land agent of the Loughton estate by Pepper in 1827. By the 1840s he was agent for seven major estates, including Norbury at Durrow. He was not well-liked by the tenantry and there were several attempts on his life. He took to carrying a pistol and wearing a steel vest as protection. The 2nd earl of Norbury was assassinated at Durrow but the real target was Garvey. He took over the Rosse estate at Parsonstown (Birr) in 1853 from George Heenan. He was a member of the Royal Society of Antiquaries of Ireland and the Kilkenny and South East of Ireland Archaeological Society, and was responsible in the late 1830s for the restoration of the medieval well of St Columcille at Durrow. He died on 4 August 1879 at the age of 85 and is buried at Borrisnafarney Church near Moneygall, County Offaly. His son, Toler Roberts Garvey, followed him into the business of land agency.

Parsons, William, 5th Earl of Rosse

  • Person
  • 1873-1918

William Edward Parsons, 5th Earl of Rosse, Baron of Oxmantown, 8th Baronet of Birr Castle, was born 14 June 1873 to Laurence Parsons, 4th Earl of Rosse, and Lady Frances Cassandra Hawke. Before inheriting the earldom, Lord Oxmantown was commissioned into a militia battalion of the West Yorkshire Regiment in 1896, and was swiftly promoted to Lieutenant. A year later, he was commissioned as a regular officer in the Coldstream Guards, and later transferred to the Irish Guards on its formation in 1900, and promoted to Captain. On 19 October 1905 he married Lady Frances Lois Lister-Kaye, daughter of Sir Cecil Lister-Kaye, 4th Baronet and Lady Beatrice Adeline Pelham-Clinton. Upon the death of his father, William Parsons became the 5th Earl of Rosse and head of the Parsons family. He was promoted to Major in 1906 and resigned in 1908. In 1911 he was elected a Representative Peer. Lord Rosse returned to military service to fight in the First World War, was wounded in action, and died on 10 June 1918.