PENROSE HOUSE ON PENROSE QUAY 2011

PENROSE HOUSE PENROSE QUAY 2019

Photographed from Anderson's Quay.


There is a plaque in memory of James Beale the father of Cork’s steamship industry.

Penrose House was the Cork Steam Packet Office on Penrose Quay where tickets for the steamships were sold to passengers. The quay is named after the Penroses who were a merchant family based in Cork.


Penrose House is an imposing large classical building with ashlar limestone facing and cut stone details to portico retaining significant elements to the interior and decorative cast iron railings to the front. Occupying a prominent site on the quays.

Also on the quay there is a public art installation - "Listening Posts". The Listening Post monument consists of four stainless steel posts (the purpose of which is not at all obvious), which play recordings of interviews with hundreds of emigrants, their descendants, people left behind and ship workers. Penrose Quay was a departure point for emigrant boats in the middle decades of the last century. The monument was developed by sculptor Daphne Wright, Meridian Theatre Company artistic director Johnny Hanrahan and sound designer Dan Jones. The €100,000 project is the city’s first permanent sound installation. According to a local newspaper city councillors claim that not many people (local or visitor) have heard the Listening Post monument. “These are supposed to be listening posts. But I’ve never seen anyone listening to them” according to Fianna Fáil Councillor Tom O’Driscoll. Mr O’Driscoll claims that a worthy project was suffering from a lack of promotion and I must agree with him but to some extent the local authorities are to blame because the area is badly maintained and there was much evidence of on-street consumption of alcohol.

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