Chillingworth & Levie Exhibition

- A Cork City and County Archives Exhibition supported by the Department of Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht -

The Last of Empire

The earliest project in the collection is a house design in Howth, Co. Dublin, for Robert Chillingworth’s brother which shows some influence of the Arts and

Crafts Movement with its simple form, steeply pitched roof, wide eaves, block and start entrance- surround and multi-paned windows. This was to be the first of many private house commissions undertaken by the firm. Two stalwarts of the Cork business community provided the firm’s major commissions in the decade before independence. The first of these was for Dwyer and Co. Ltd which was founded in the 19th century with a large shop on Great George’s (Washington) Street and which subsequently developed the Lee Boot Manufacturing Company. In 1914 Chillingworth & Levie designed a warehouse building for the boot factory on

Front elevation, Howth House, ink on glazed linen, Chillingworth & Levie, 1911, 59 x 39cm, Cork City and County Archives

Hanover Street. The proposed elevation shows elements of industrial functionalism in the window design, plain exterior and open floor plans. Ultimately, this was not built although elements of that design were incorporated into the new boot factory on Washington Street West, built in 1919 which also has a twelve-bay arrangement and strong horizontal emphasis.

Proposed front elevation, ink on paper, Dwyer’s Factory, Chillingworth & Levie, 1914, 53 x 34cm, Cork City and County Archives

The Counting House, built for the Beamish & Crawford Brewery on South Main Street, is undoubtedly the most significant project for the

Square Deal (the former Lee Boot Factory), Chillingworth & Levie, 1919, courtesy the NIAH

company in the period pre-Independence. The street frontage on South Main Street had been cleared and a new elevation was required to front the brewery which had been previously hidden. With a nod to the Edwardian era ended by World War I, the 1919 design features attractive half-timbering, jettied first and second floors in the Tudor Revival style, flanked by crow-stepped gables with Tudor-style windows and hood mouldings. The qualities of the Tudor style are continued internally with fine timber panelled walls, an ornate timber fireplace and decorative stairs. While arguably a façade in its extent, the

The former Beamish and Crawford Brewery Offices, South Main Street, Cork, Chillingworth & Levie, photograph taken by Louise Harrington

Advert for the House of Dwyer, Guy’s City and County Cork Almanac and Directory for 1940, Cork City and County Archives

Counting House nonetheless forms an important part of the architectural legacy of the Beamish & Crawford families to the city which includes the Crawford Art Gallery (former Crawford Schools of Science & Art, 1888), CIT Crawford College of Art & Design (former Crawford Municipal Technical Institute, 1909), former brewery stables, Bishop Street (1902), as well as support for the

Proposed gate option for the Beamish and Crawford Brewery Offices, pencil and watercolour on paper, Chillingworth & Levie, 1919, 67 x 49cm, Cork City and County Archives

building of St. Fin Barre’s Cathedral (1862-1912).

This prestigious commission is likely to have arisen from the projects completed for the brewery in 1918. These were the Oval Bar, opposite the Counting House, and another public house on Albert Street which is now the Sextant. The Oval Bar has remained very much intact from its original construction and conserves one of a small number of original bar counters in the said oval plan. Again preserving a historic style used in the

Detail of ‘Proposed additions and alterations to the premises of Messrs Beamish & Crawford Ltd, Cork’, ink on paper Chillingworth & Levie, 1919, 102 x 68cm, Cork City and County Archives

Edwardian era, the Scots Baronial-style of the elevation may be seen in the uneven roofline, crow- stepped chimney gable, corner turret and tripartite

The Oval Bar, South Main Street, Cork, courtesy the NIAH

windows with block surrounds – probable references to Daniel Levie’s Scottish origins.

Interior of the Oval Bar, South Main Street, Cork, courtesy the NIAH

Advert for Beamish & Crawford Ltd, Guy’s City and County Cork Almanac and Directory for 1940, Cork City and County Archives

Elevation and perspective of bar option for the Oval Bar, pencil on tracing paper, Chillingworth & Levie, 1918, 41 x 29cm, Cork City and County Archives

Powered by