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Belle Isle estate in Co Fermanagh placed on the market for £7.5m

The Belle Isle Estate, near Lisbellaw, which spans 448 acres and includes a castle, 17 cottages and five islands.
The Belle Isle Estate, near Lisbellaw, which spans 448 acres and includes a castle, 17 cottages and five islands. The Belle Isle Estate, near Lisbellaw, which spans 448 acres and includes a castle, 17 cottages and five islands.

THE Belle Isle estate in Co Fermanagh has been placed on the market, with an asking price of £7.5 million.

The estate, which stretches to 448 acres near Lisbellaw, includes the 17th century Belle Isle Castle, a walled garden and 17 cottages and apartments.

Belle Isle itself is an island, but the listing also includes four smaller islands on Upper Lough Erne: Killygowan Island, Carrickmacrourk Island, Creaghmacwallen Island and Bilberry Island.

The estate last changed hands in 1991, when it was bought by James Hamilton, the fifth Duke of Abercorn, whose family seat is the Baronscourt Estate, located near Newtownstewart in Co Tyrone.

It was reportedly bought by the Duke of Abercorn for his youngest son, Lord Nicholas Hamilton.

Since it was acquired by the Abercorns, the estate has been significantly developed into a tourist resort, featuring a hotel and guest accommodation that can accommodate up to 65 guests.

It helped make Belle Isle a popular wedding venue.

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Belle Isle Castle, which was built in the 18th century,
Belle Isle Castle, which was built in the 18th century, Belle Isle Castle, which was built in the 18th century,

A cookery school was also opened on the estate in 2004.

The full property listing, which appeared on the market in recent days, indicates the estate generates a diverse income through the combination of rental income and venue-related revenue.

Under the Duke of Abercorn, the Belle Isle Estate has been developed into a tourist resort and wedding venue.
Under the Duke of Abercorn, the Belle Isle Estate has been developed into a tourist resort and wedding venue. Under the Duke of Abercorn, the Belle Isle Estate has been developed into a tourist resort and wedding venue.

“The estate infrastructure has been maintained to a high standard, while the estate itself has been well managed under the direction of the present owners.

“There is however scope for the next custodian of Belle Isle to develop or diversify the estate further and to make use of natural assets for those wishing to offset their carbon footprint or mitigate the effects of climate change."

Originally known as Ballymacmanus Island, the island belonged to the MacManus clan pre-Plantation and it is where the historian and chieftain Cathal Og MacManus compiled the Annals of Ulster.

Ownership was later transferred to Paul Gore following the Flight of the Earls in 1607.

It was the Elizabethan soldier’s son, Ralph Gore, who built Belle Isle Castle. It was sold to the Porter family in the mid-19th century and remained within the family until sold by Lavinia Baird in 1991.