Glengarrriff Eccles Hotel History

The name Eccles first appears in the records of Bantry House(now in the Boole Library of U.C.C.).It states that in 1835 Thomas Eccles rented land and buildings comprising 28 acres, 2 roods and 4 perches from the Earl of Bantry for the sum of £16 and 12 shillings - equivalent to €21.00 in today's currency - per annum. In 1835 Griffiths Valuation records that Thomas Eccles paid rent to the earl of Bantry of £25 and 2 shillings for hotel, office and land at Reenmeen, Glengarriff.

 

John Eccles, son of Thomas, carried out major reconstruction of the Eccles in 1890 and also changed the name from Glengarriff Inn to the Eccles Hotel.

 

In the early 1900's the Eccles Hotel was still in the ownership of the Eccles Family and was managed by a Mr. Courtney.

 

The hotel was leased to the British War office from 1918 to 1920. During this time it was known as the Queen Alexandria Home of Rest for Officers and was occupied by soldiers recuperating from the trauma of World War 1. It cost one guinea (€1.90) per week for full board with fishing and shooting rights. From 1920 to 1921 the hotel was occupied by troops of the Essex Regiment. The troops were under the command of Major Arthur Percival (later General) who subsequently saw action against the Japanese in Singapore in 1942.

 

From 1921 to 1927 the hotel was managed by a Mr. Duke and later on by a Mrs. Galli.

 

The inaugural meeting of the Irish cruising Club was held in the Eccles in 1929 and a plaque commemorating this was placed at the entrance of the hotel. On the 75th anniversary of the founding of the club in 2004 the ICC invited four of the sister cruising clubs from around the world to join them in a cruise of the southwest coast of Ireland. More than 180 boats and 750 members sailed to Glengarriff where there was a major function in the Eccles Hotel to commemorate the occasion.

 

In 1929 the hotel was assigned to a company called Irish Hotels Ltd.

 

An Italian businessman, Renato Fogliana, purchased the Eccles in 1977 but after a brief period it was sold on the the O'Keeffe family in 1978 whose company, Irish Enterprises Inc., operated it for the next nine years.

 

In 1987 the hotel was acquired by D & B Murphy.

 

The Hanratty Family purchased the Eccles Hotel in January 2000. Since then it has been completely refurbished while still retaining its magic and history. The official opening of the refurbished hotel was performed by An Taoiseach (Prime Minister) Mr. Bertie Ahern in October 2002.

 

FAMOUS PEOPLE WHO HAVE STAYED IN THE HOTEL

 

In 1850 Wiliam Makepeace Thackeray (1811-1863) the famous journalist and writer boarded at the Eccles and described it as a pretty Inn.

 

George Bernard Shaw(1856-1950) stayed in the hotel in 1910/1911 and is reputed to have written extensively during his time here.

 

During the 1920's William Butler Yeats (poet & playwright) was a regular visitor to the Eccles Hotel. The Presidential Suite is named after him.

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