Jun 05 2010

More Michael Jackson in Ireland: Bishopstown House Was to be His Irish Retreat

Category: Dreams,Friends,PhotosSeven @ 6:41 pm

Oh how I wish he’d have stayed there. Ireland. Which Michael clearly loved and could have had an actual normal existence there (well except that son of a Bush who outed him to all and sundry just before he left).

Here’s a little tidbit that came out just yesterday, about Bishopstown House. Michael’s friend Paddy Dunning, owner of the lovely Grouse Lodge where Michael recorded while there, was apparently secretly having this dilapidated house renovated for him to be used as a retreat for himself and family.

Here’s the place. Notice the new wooden wing at the back of the house.  Here is an advert for its rental now as a self-catering mansion/retreat.

Bishopstown House

Bishopstown House

Bishopstown House - Master Bedroom

Bishopstown House - Master Bedroom

Bishopstown House Dining Room

Bishopstown House Dining Room

Bishopstown House Alternate View

Bishopstown House Alternate View

A HOUSE which Michael Jackson was refurbishing as an Irish retreat is to be launched as a self-catering holiday mansion.

Bishopstown House in Co Westmeath was bought in trust for Jackson in 2006 by the well-known entrepreneur Paddy Dunning who owns the nearby Grouse Lodge Studios which are popular with artists such as R.E.M, Manic Street Preachers and Snow Patrol.

Jackson spent time in Ireland in 2005 after his trial on allegations of improper relations with minors and fell in love with the house which was in a dilapidated state.

The house was being renovated just before Jackson’s death last year and was left in limbo.

It was while recording demos of his new album in 2006 that he decided to look for a more permanent home in Ireland before discovering Bishopstown House which is in Rosemount.

In 2008, Dunning applied on his behalf for planning permission to Westmeath County Council to refurbish the house and add a number of maisonettes. There were also plans for an indoor swimming pool. At the time the fact that the work was being done for Jackson was kept secret from the public.

All restoration work was stopped on Jackson’s death, but Dunning decided to finish the job having got permission from the Jackson family to do so. The renovated house has six spacious bedrooms, most of which feature four poster beds, and it can sleep 13. Most of the rooms are en suite with large bathrooms on a new wooden wing all featuring outstanding views of the surrounding countryside.

9 Responses to “More Michael Jackson in Ireland: Bishopstown House Was to be His Irish Retreat”

  1. Seven says:


    How exiting that you got to stay there! Paddy Dunning seems like a very nice man and that house looks incredible. Oh how I wish Michael would have stayed in Ireland. He might still be with us if he had. He deserved an Irish retreat and so much more. Yes, I hope he’s in a better place now.

    What a great friend you have to set this up for your birthday! Awesome!

  2. eoin burke says:

    Hay all,seen this and had to put it up that i stayed there….how lucky am i,my girlfriend jenny set a surprise 30th birthday party for me with thanks to a true gentleman paddy dunning,it was most amazing weekend of my life,all the furniture is so beautiful all mj’s good taste he would of grown old there i think i really do.if you love mj you will love this place you would know it was his,im a huge michael jackson fan not one of those weirdo ones that you see on x facter all the time im just a lad who i suppose just admired a man who could …dance the fcuk out of anyone who dared challange him.He had a lot of bullshi t thrown at him over the years and i just didnt fall into storys that what wer told,i find it amazing how easy people turn there backs on people these days,anyway i hope hes in a better place now rip michael jackson ………

  3. caf says:

    I love how on the rental advertisement there is not one mention that Michael ever stayed there.
    The owner clearly had true affection for Michael-so lovely to see him treated with respect.

  4. Cynthia Wegener says:

    Thank you Seven for posting this story. I share everyone’s feelings about Michael staying in Ireland. We all know that he would still be with his children if that had happened. At the same time, these stories always make me glad that Michael had his special time in that beautiful country. He suffered so much during and after the trial and I’m very glad that he and his kids enjoyed a normal family life, at least for a little while.

  5. Saskia says:

    Always love reading the Ireland stories as it was such a peacefull and happy time for him. How we all wish he could have retreated there and live a normal life with his 3 kids.

  6. appleh says:

    This must be one of the happiest times of his life, when even only for a while no one knows where he was.

  7. MJRedSilk says:

    Oh Seven, thank you for this. Whenever I read info about Michael’s time in Ireland my heart aches that little bit more as I know this is where he should’ve stayed. This is where he could have been himself. Creative, content, at peace. The Irish people are wonderful. Strangers smile at you and ask after you with a genuineness that you so rarely find now.
    Thank you for all that you do Seven.

  8. salgal56 says:

    I saw a piece on TV a few weeks ago about his time in Ireland. Michael Flatley (lord of the dance)shared that he had spent time with MJ, but didn’t give anything other than general infomation, which was nice of him. Anyway, thanks for all this great information.

  9. Justice4MJJ says:

    I wish he could’ve stayed in Ireland too, but the monsters had to ruin it for him. Plus, it would interfere with their devious conspiracy against him. #%^*#^%(@*