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Wells House & Garden

The Wells Artist: Lady Frances

At the age of 26 Charles Mervyn, married the daughter of one of England’s richest families, Lady Frances Fitzwilliam whose family had built up their fortune through mining coal on their 20,000-acre estate near Sheffield in Yorkshire.

Charles Mervyn studied in England at Cambridge University at the same time as two of Lady Frances’ brothers, and had stayed with the family at Coollattin, playing cricket, shooting and fishing. He and Lady Frances announced their engagement in September 1867 and married two months later at Wentworth Woodhouse.

After marriage Lady Frances and Charles Mervin Doyne moved into Wells House.

As with any well-born young lady of her generation she was taught many skills believed to be necessary for a lady of that time and music, singing, drawing, dancing and modern languages were among them. Ladies were then expected to perform at music gatherings and dinner parties.

Art was an important part of Lady Frances’ education, and she was an accomplished water-colour painter. She spent her time at Wells in the gardens and parkland painting. There were up to 20 gardeners at Wells House and when the ladies of the house would go out to spend time in the gardens and paint they would sweep the pathways for them to walk. The woodland and the wishing the ladies favourite places to paint.

Lady Frances did not stop with the landscape of Wells House, she would bring her watercolours with her as she travelled. Her paintings from the beautiful landscape of Glen Garriff in West Cork, the Old Bridge in Shillelagh and the Vale of Clara in Co. Wicklow adorn the walls in the Shell room in Wells House today.


Wells House & Gardens are now taking bookings for our exciting  2021 School Tours Packages.

School Tours 2021

We are currently developing beautiful new walks through the Magic Woods of Wells House & Gardens, which children and teachers can enjoy on their visit. Our Adventure Playground is perfect for letting the kids work off some energy before getting back on the bus. All our packages offer free playtime for all.

This International Dawn Chorus Day, we invite you to experience our own magical ‘Dawn Chorus’ with exclusive early morning access to Well House & Gardens and Woodland Walks.

Dawn Chorus Morning

Lose yourself in Spring’s joyful morning song and enjoy the beautiful Sunrise at 05.51am, listening to a backdrop of birdsong whilst watching the day awaken in the enchanting gardens and woodlands.

Relax, unwind and enjoy your retirement with the help of Wells House & Gardens.

Active Retirement

Spend an afternoon in the dining room of the house itself and then take a step back in time with a guided house tour, bringing you back to a time when the magnificent ground floor and bedrooms witnessed the stories of Cromwell, Rebellions and the Famine.

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