250th | Thomas Cooley: A Short and Remarkable Career

The Georgian character that the architecture within the City of Armagh enjoys today can be traced back to the time of Richard Robinson, who was the Church of Ireland Archbishop of Armagh from 1765 to 1794.

One of the first architects that Robinson regularly employed was Thomas Cooley who, baptised in London, first came to Ireland in 1769 after winning a competition to design the Royal Exchange (now the City Hall) building in Dublin. Cooley designed several buildings within the city and Diocese of Armagh for Archbishop Robinson, including Armagh Robinson Library and the Royal School. Original drawings for some of these buildings form part of the collection held at Armagh Robinson Library. Cooley also designed several Irish country houses, including Caledon House, County Tyrone.

This lecture, held on Monday 4 October 2021 (World Architecture Day), was organised as part of a series of lectures to mark Armagh Robinson Library’s 250th anniversary. It is introduced by Lord Caledon, the Lord Lieutenant of County Armagh.