Architecture History Tour

Local historian, Tony Harpur leads a fascinating tour around Midleton discussing local architecture and history. Starts form the library.

Despite his seemingly English name, Tony Harpur is actually as Irish as anybody who is descended from invaders who came here in the 12th century. Born in the former Cork Workhouse (St Finbarr’s Hospital), and a native of Midleton in County Cork, he worked in Dell, Limerick, from 1997 to 2009. Whilst living in Limerick he was a volunteer guide/researcher (docent) at the Hunt Museum. His lifelong interest in history led Tony to pursue an MA in the History of Art and Architecture at the University of Limerick, where he produced a dissertation on the mitre and crozier of Bishop Cornelius O’Dea of Limerick (1418).

Graduating in 2012, Tony has since returned to his native town to pursue his interests in history, heritage, genealogy and heritage tourism. He presents short courses in Family History at St Colman’s Community College, lectures in local history at Midleton Library, is advising on plans to make Cloyne Round Tower and Cathedral into a real tourist venue. Tony has even ventured into deepest Kerry to explain how the Fitzgeralds of Kerry ended up as the Fitzgeralds of Imokilly in south-east Cork! In the spring of 2016 he was appointed chairman of the Midleton & Area Chamber of Commerce’s Heritage Committee, and in Autumn 2016 he was appointed as advisor to the Cork County Council Historic Monuments Advisory Committee. He is also a member of the Cloyne Literary and Historical Society and the newly formed Cork Harbour Historical Alliance. His big project is currently planning celebrations to mark the 350th anniversary of his home town’s charter and modern name in 2020.

Delve into his informative site HERE!

An early twentieth century photograph by the Horgan brothers of Youghal showing St John the Baptist’s Church, Midleton, across the Owenacurra River. The present church was completed in 1825 and stands on the site of the abbey church of Chore. This photo (on Tony’s site) is produced with the permission of Jim Horgan. The image can also be seen on the Cork County Library website’s digital collections.