LIVING HERE

Spend some time with the locals

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About this section

The red brick Iveagh buildings are the foundation on which this community is built. If their walls could talk, they would tell the stories of generations of Dubliners who have spent time here; from learning how to swim in the Iveagh Baths to playing in the Iveagh Play Centre. The area continues to be home to a diverse and vibrant community.

The Iveagh Trust’s Bull Alley Estate was commissioned by the Earl of Iveagh, Sir Edward Cecil Guinness, to replace the slums of the area around Saint Patrick’s Cathedral. Completed in 1905, it was the largest piece of urban renewal in Edwardian Dublin and is among the finest examples of Art Nouveau architecture in Ireland. Its housing blocks are 5 storeys high and the ground floor comprises of small shop units which are still in use today.

Meet Liam

Liam Finegan has been manager of the Bull Alley Estate since 1993. One of his proudest moments was being involved in the estate's recently completed six year refurbishment programme.

Liam also oversees the tours of flat 3B. This flat has been nominated as both "one of the top five tiniest museums in Dublin that you don't want to miss" and one of the top ten places to visit during Open House Dublin. Gifted to the Iveagh Trust by Nellie Molloy’s family, the original layout and furnishings of the flat have been preserved, and this allows visitors to get a sense of what life in the Iveagh flats used to be like.

Click the image below for an interactive view of one of the rooms.

"the bun was gorgeous but as dry as a badger..."

Muriel Fagan

Muriel
Fagan
1:38

Memories

of the Bayno, Baths, and Buildings

Seán
O'Connor
0:37
Michael
Eustace
1:01
Marie
Lancaster
0:35
John
Gibbons
1:13

The Iveagh Play Centre

The Iveagh Play Centre opened in 1915 and was the successor to the original Myra Hall Play Centre on Francis Street. Originally boys and girls between the ages of three and fourteen were taught dancing, singing, basket-making, needlework, drawing, painting, cooking and housework here.

Open for five evenings and one morning every week this spacious and well designed building had eleven classrooms and three large halls.
Owen
Dowling
0:31
Seán
O'Connor
0:37
Seán
Maguire
0:58
“The new swimming baths attached to the Iveagh Trust buildings in Bride Road were thrown open to the public yesterday morning. At 7am the baths were informally opened by the Secretary, Mr. Bonner, and they attracted a large number of bathers during the day...

From April to October the baths will be open from 7am to 9pm, and from October to the end of March from 8am to 8pm. On Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays the baths will be filled with fresh water, and on these days the charge of admittance will be 4d, while on the remaining week days the charge will be 2d.

Children under 10 years of age will be admitted at half price hot and cold water will be available in the reclining baths for which there will be a charge of 6d first class and 3d second class.”

The Irish Times Thursday June 7th 1906
Frances
Swords
1:04
“We could have moved somewhere else. But why? We have been here so long that this is our home.”
- from Chris Reid’s “Heirlooms and Hand Me Downs” plaque installation
Paul
Scanlon
1:20
Teresa
Nolan
1:09
Ursula
Forde
1:44
Kevin
Mylan
0:56
Richard
Quinn
1:18
Mathew
Geoghegan
0:38
Eddie & Ed
Walsh
0:32
Gerry
O'Connor
1:23

The Iveagh Hostel

The Iveagh Hostel

The Iveagh Hostel is a male only hostel which first opened its doors in 1905. The residents have the use of laundry facilities, TV rooms, a games room, a gym, a computer room and a library. A Community Welfare Officer clinic is held every Tuesday morning.

Well known literary figures that have stayed here in the past include poet Patrick Kavanagh and novelist Liam O’Flaherty.

Trust

Trust is a non-political, non-denominational, social and health service for homeless people which was set up by Alice Leahy (affectionately known as Nurse Alice by the locals) in 1975.

The charity is located in a basement beside the Iveagh Hostel in the Bull Alley Estate, and is open from 9 to 12pm from Monday to Friday, where any one morning can see up to 50 men and women call. Trust provides washing and medical facilities and gives out over 500 outfits of clothing per month.

Alice
Leahy
3:07