45 High Street
Built in the late 18th century, this attached four-bay, two storey townhouse, is one of the oldest properties in Lurgan. In recognition of its architectural significance the property was listed (reference number: HB14/23/032A) as a Grade B1 listed building on 14 August 1981 by the Historic Environment Division.
Numbers 45 and 47 High Street originally formed a single farmhouse which was built under the auspices of John and Henry Cuppage in c.1790. By the 1850s the farmhouse had been subsequently split into two properties as evidenced in a newspaper advertisements dating to 1854 announcing the auction of the properties which we now know as 45 and 47 High Street. A Methodist minister, Rev. Mr Cather, is noted as the occupant of number 45 at this time. Also advertised for sale were an extensive series of outbuildings to the rear of both properties which were used for offices and warehousing. The adverts note that at this time they were being let by the linen manufacturers Charles Druitt & Company.
According to the Griffiths Valuation Revision Books, by the 1860s the dwelling houses at numbers 45 and 47 High Street, along with the warehousing to the rear of the properties (identified as number 45a High Street) had been acquired by the linen and cotton yarn merchant Samuel McCullagh. He is listed as the occupier of the dwelling at number 45 from 1860 to 1885, while he let the warehousing of number 45a and the dwelling at number 47 to other tenants.
In 1885 the handkerchief linen firm Murphy and Stevenson then acquired the leases for numbers 45, 45a and 47 from Samuel McCullagh. They operated their manufacturing business from the outbuildings of number 45a, even establishing a hemstitching factory there. Arthur Stevenson, presumably a co-owner of the company, is noted as the occupier of the dwelling at number 45 until c.1900. From this point the house was let to Hugh MacGeagh, the managing director of the Lurgan Weaving Company. Following his death in 1925, his widow Josephine continued to live here until c.1946.
Murphy and Stevenson appear to have departed Lurgan in the 1930s, with newspaper adverts dating to 1936 announcing the auction of numbers 45, 45a and 47 High Street. It appears the auction was not successful, for the properties were advertised for auction again in 1942. By the 1950s number 45 had passed into the ownership of Doctor Robert Pedlow and later the Best family. The outbuildings at number 45a High Street (now 47a) were occupied by the L.M. Press from the 1950s until 2004.
On 26 September 2017 a blaze engulfed the derelict number 45 destroying much of the house interior. As one of our designated priority buildings, we are working with the current owner to restore this historic house to its original Georgian splendour. Plans for the site are currently in the design phase.
3D digital model showing the current layout of 43, 45, 47 and 47a High Street. Courtesy of McCreanor Company Architects.