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Kilfane Glen & Waterfall, Homestead of the Mosse family

Kilfane is Ireland’s answer to Marie Antoinette’s Petit Trianon. This rediscovered treasure of gardening history was originally designed in the 1790's in the fashionably romantic style to embellish the gothic wonders of nature.

Follow a sinuous pathway through the wooded demesne in the 18th Century estate, and boasts an attractive glen and stream with a series of pools and cascades forming the centrepiece.

Garden Rescue

This romantic garden was rescued from the undergrowth by Nicholas Mosse, and his wife Susan. In the process, the couple rediscovered a grotto and the ruins of a cottage orné, all part of the idealised rural idyll. They also rediscovered an artificial waterfall opposite the cottage, fed by water diverted via pumps and canal. The cottage was restored with thatch and leaded window panes in keeping with a 1921 print, and with interiors designed by the late Sybil Connolly.

Other attractions of the garden include a sculpture trail through the woods and a series of contemporary gardens laid out around Mosse’s home. There is a formal pool garden, a white moon garden, a blue orchard, a mysterious hall of mirrors and a wildlife pond.

It opens in July and August from 11am to 6pm daily and by appointment.

A rolling stone gathers five Mosses...of the creative Mosse Family variety!

The Mosses, a Quaker family, established a corn mill on the River Nore at Bennettsbridge. Stanley, the father, trained as a sculptor and creativity flowed. By 1976, the pottery took over the disused mill buildings and harnessed the river for power.

Generations of Mosse apples have fallen close to the artistic tree.

  • Nicholas, potter and ceramicist, is one of five talented siblings who now exhibits his work from bronze and stone to wood.
  • Brother Paul – Recently awarded the most significant award in Irish contemporary art – The Savills Prize
  • Skip down a generation to Richard, a prominent photographic artist of international acclaim and winner of the Deutsche Börse and the Prix Pictet. He was also chosen as Ireland’s entry to the Venice Biennal.


Creativity is the lifeblood of this Kilkenny made legacy. From this relatively small county in the heartland of Ireland’s ancient east, Kilkenny has an artistic credential that fosters talent. See for yourself and drop by the Butler Gallery in Kilkenny Castle, soon to relocate to Evans Home. Or visit Grennan College in Thomastown where you just might find the next big thing to take the international artistic community by storm.


In this article

Kilfane Glen & Waterfall

Recommended Experiences

These Boots Were Made for Walkin’: Bennettsbridge and the Nore Valley Walk

Outdoor Experiences in Kilkenny

4 Destinations That Are So Kilkenny

Kilfane Glen & Waterfall, Homestead of the Mosse family

MADE in Kilkenny

Kilfane Glen & Waterfall

3.2km north of Thomastown, Co. Kilkenny

056 7727105

[email protected]


Kilfane Glen and Waterfall is a pristine example of a romantic era garden dating from the 1790s. Untouched for 200 years, it is a picturesque paradise with a waterfall tumbling its way to a rushing stream and woodland paths leading to a cottage orné. Tiny bridges sit among ancient trees, wild fox-gloves, ferns and other historically correct 18th century planting. The garden is listed as an Irish Heritage garden and was awarded assistance in 1993 by the European Union Cultural Commission. As an amenity it covers about 15 acres of easily accessible natural landscape. Other nearby gardens of historic significance are Altamount, Haywood (Luyteens), Mount Juliet, Woodstock and Ballymaloe Kitchen Gardens.