A fantasy castle, The Humes and A ground breaking court case

Humewood Castle was built in 1872 and is located in Kiltegan. co.Wicklow. The Humes formerly lived in a fortified tower house built here in the 15th century which has passed down through successive generations of the same family. Fitzwilliam Hume who was a wealthy MP for Wicklow from 1852 to 1880 commissioned the architect William White to design a country retreat for his summer shooting season.  White over-ran the budget by more than €1m (in today’s currency) and his refusal to pay the builder, Albert Kimberley, led to one of the most celebrated law cases in architectural history. Kimberley eventually won and this lead to White bankrupting Fitzwilliam in the process! His only son, William Hume, however, inherited the property. He was appointed Deputy Lieutenant of Wicklow and served as the High Sheriff of Wicklow in 1896. The estate then passed to his daughter Catherine Marie-Madeleine (Mimi), who married Jacques Weygand, the son of the French General Maxime Weygand. They had no children and in 1992, shortly before her death, Mimi presented the majority of the estate cottages, to her tenants. The castle and 450-acre estate were subsequently sold at auction to the German businesswoman Renata Coleman for £1 million. Renata Coleman developed the house into an upmarket private hotel and introduced duck shooting and polo in the grounds. In 2004 she sold it to the Galway developers Lalco for €16 million. Economic conditions were unfavorable, however, and in 2012 it was sold at a loss for 8 million euros to American billionaire John Malone who is now sympathetically restoring it back to its former glory.