The Irish salvage yards & auction houses worthy of a rummage
As well as being a Monday bank holiday for relaxing and unwinding, today is also World Earth Day. Celebrated across the world, it demonstrates support for environmental protection through events and initiatives. To celebrate, we’re shining a spotlight on Irish salvage yards. Buying from them not only means that no new object is required, but also ensures an older item is given a renewed lease of life.
While UK and continental markets are well-established, it can be challenging to find not only markets, but previously loved interior items of quality, at a good price in Ireland. Thankfully, there are a number of salvage yards and showrooms around the country to help fill the gap, who source from period buildings here.
Deck Clad Architectural Salvage
Kingswood Cross, Naas Road, Dublin 22. 01 459 5492; architecturalsalvage.ie
Deck Clad has been in the salvage business for over 20 years when owner Gerry O’Rourke started sending recycled bricks from Dublin and Belfast to salvage yards in England, and now his son Nile runs the company under Gerry’s watchful eye. The company has grown significantly since then, stocking everything from garden ornaments to timber floors and cast-iron stoves. However, their speciality remains salvaged building materials for new homes or restoration projects. With a focus on authentic period materials, it’s well worth heading to their salvage yard on the Naas Road for a nosey round.
Victor Mee Auctions
Belturbet, Cloverhill, Co Cavan. 04 755 076; victormeeauctions.ie
If tiptoeing around salvage yards doesn’t feel like your thing but you still want to find something unusual or period, there are plenty of auction houses around the country where a good deal is possible, and they’re generally well organised. Victor Mee Auctions in Co Cavan hosts an auction once a month, usually focusing on one speciality, whether that’s memorabilia, wooden furniture, bespoke interior pieces or country house contents. It’s well-worth visiting their auction room for a look around or even a tour from father-son duo Victor and Bryan.
Kilkenny Architectural Salvage & Antiques
The Old Woollen Mills, Bleach Road, Kilkenny. 056 776 4434; eurosalve.com
Tucked into the old 19th-century woollen mills on the river Nore, Kilkenny Architectural Salvage was opened by Robin Maharaj in 1998 and is now one of the largest in the country, with a huge warehouse and outdoor stock area. Harry likes to give customers a taste of everything including antique objects, period furniture and salvaged materials, and as a result his customers are often a mix of homeowners, architects and commercial designers looking to give a restaurant or bar some old-time authenticity. Their cast-iron radiator service is particularly excellent.
The Store Yard
Kea-Lew Business Park, Portlaoise, Co Laois. 057 868 0088; thestoreyard.ie
As their business card says, The Store Yard really are “purveyors of the unusual”. Founded in 2010 by former builder David Keane and his family, they started out opening an antique shop three days a week by appointment only. But a feature on BBC’s Antique’s Road Trip suddenly put the Portlaoise spot on the map and David decided to expand, with a salvage, antique and café area. With a great array of period and retro pieces, it has become a sourcing spot for many set designers and prop people as well as homeowners.
749 South Circular Road, Islandbridge, Dublin 8. 01 679 2110; macswarehouse.ie
The oldest family-run salvage yard in Dublin, formerly known as McGovern’s salvage yard, began when Charles McGovern sold scrap metal from his horse and cart on the streets of Dublin in the 1940s. Now Mac’s Warehouse, it is run by his grandsons, Ed and Greg McGarry. An Aladdin’s cave of modern and architectural salvage, they specialise in cast-iron fireplaces, doors and reclaimed floorboards, as well as restoration projects. If you’ve nestled into a seat at the Stella cinema in Rathmines recently you have Mac’s to thank for the beautifully reupholstered 1920s seats.
123, Hillsborough Road Dromore, Co Down. 0044 489 269 2304; wilsonsyard.com
Located on the way into Belfast from Dublin in Dromore, Wilsons Yard is a very worthy pitstop. It’s a family-run business that’s been hoarding architectural salvage for the last 40 years, so expect to find pieces from every era, including antique chandeliers, cast-iron radiators, a variety of furniture and lots of salvaged building materials. However, their focus is flooring so if you’re on the hunt for parquet, wood block flooring or reclaimed planks, make sure to pay a visit. Named Best Architectural Salvage Yard in Ireland and the UK in 2016 by the Sustainable Building Awards, Wilsons Yard is always immaculately laid out, you should be able to find what you’re looking for without too much rummaging.