Landed Estates
NUI Galway

Blake (Ballyglunin)


A branch of the Blakes of Cregg Castle. Martin Joseph Blake of Ballyglunin (1790-1861) was a Member of Parliament for the borough of Galway.


Name Description
Forster (Blake Forster) The Forster family were of English origin who first acquired property in Galway in the 1640s. The progenitor of the family in county Galway was Francis Forster who was the son of Thomas Forster of Hunsdon, Hertfordshire. He obtained the Clooneene/Ashfield property by Royal grant from Charles II dated 18 Aug 1677 and chose to live there from then on. Francis married Mary O'Donnellan, daughter of Sir James O'Donnellan. The family also had houses at Rathorpe and later at Fiddaun as well as in county Clare in the parishes of Kilfenora and Drumcreehy. Francis Forster, who inherited the estate in 1752, married Anastasia Blake of Menlough and the family became known as Blake-Forster. The estate at Ashfield passed from the Blake Forster family in the 1830s. The Abbeyknockmoy estate situated in the baronies of Tiaquin and Athenry, county Galway, also belonged to the Blake Forsters. Samuel Lewis writing in the 1830s refers to a grant of Abbeyknockmoy by James I to Valentine Blake in 1629. This estate of almost 4,000 acres was offered for sale in Oct 1851. A newspaper cutting with the rental in the National Archives records the purchase of the unsold portions of the estate by Dominick Donnellan and Richard C. McNevin, a relative and agent to the Blake Forsters. By the time of Griffith's Valuation, a few years later, Donnellan and McNevin's purchases were in the possession of Martin J. Blake of Ballyglunin and James Thorngate. In the 1870s Captain Francis Blake Forster owned 3,593 acres in county Galway and 1,308 acres in county Clare, while Robert Blake Forster of Corofin, county Clare, owned 572 acres in county Galway. In 1906 Marcella Blake Forster owned over 250 acres of untenanted land and a mansion house at Corr, in the barony of Longford. An offer from the Congested Districts Board on a small acreage owned by Miss M. L. Forster was accepted sometime after 1909. see / For McNevin and Blake Forster marriage see
Blake (Ballyglunin) In ''Blake Family Records'' Martin J. Blake states that Martin Blake of Cummer, county Galway, purchased Ballyglunin from Charles Holcraft, the grantee under the Cromwellian settlement and that he was confirmed in his possession of 1,895 acres in the barony of Clare by patent dated 26 July 1677. By the mid 19th century the Blake estate was in the parishes of Kilmoylan, Belclare, Killererin, Annaghdown and Tuam, barony of Clare, in the parish of Abbeyknockmoy, barony of Tiaquin and in the parish of Rahoon, barony of Galway. In the 1870s the Blakes owned over 10,000 acres in the locality. By March 1916 the Blakes had accepted a final offer of over £60,000 from the Congested Districts' Board for almost 9,800 acres of their estate. The early generations intermarried a number of times with members of the Joyce family. John Blake, a younger son of Martin Blake and his wife Bridget Joyce, married Olivia French of Brooklodge in 1803. However the sale rental of Brooklodge and other property in the county of the town of Galway belonging to Walter Martin Blake dated 1867 indicates that Martin J. Blake bought the lease of Brooklodge for £10,000, rather than inheriting it. The property in the town of Galway was purchased by Messers. Browne, Higgins, O'Flaherty and West.
Skerrett (Ballinduff) The Skerretts owned an estate in the barony of Clare, county Galway, which was confiscated at the time of the Cromwellian settlement. However various members of the Skerrett family were granted lands in the barony by patent dated 16 Mar 1678 and Hughes writes that they were able to buy back some of their former property around Ballinduff in the 1680s. Hely Dutton lists four branches of the family situated at Nutgrove, Drumgriffin, Ballinduff and Carnacrow. William Skerrett of Carrownacroagh, parish of Killursa, is documented in the Ordnance Survey Name Books. His agent was John Joyce of Headford. Over 550 acres of his estate was sold in 1843. It was bought by John Nolan, F. Blake and possibly George Staunton Lynch. By the mid 19th century the Skerrett estate was mainly in the parish of Kilcoona but also contained lands in the parishes of Killeany, Killererin and Kilmoylan. Some of their estate had formerly belonged to the Deane family of Balrobuck, parish of Annaghdown, with whom the Skerretts intermarried. The Galway County Library contains particulars of a house in Cross Street, Galway and lands in the barony of Clare, including Balrobuck, which were advertised for sale in 1841 in connection with a legal case between Dominick Lynch and Dominick Skerrett. Brooklodge was Skerrett property by the time of Griffith's Valuation but was held by the Blakes of Ballyglunin on a lease dated 1775, Ambrose Deane to Christopher French. The Skerretts were still resident at Ballinduff in 1814 but later moved to Dublin following a marriage with one of the co heirs of John Locke of Athgoe Park, Dublin. In the 1870s the Skerretts owned 3,733 acres in county Galway and 969 acres in county Dublin. Joseph Skerrett Blake was a magistrate for counties Galway and Mayo in the 1880s. He was the son of Mary Skerrett of Athgoe Park, Dublin and Joseph Blake of Tumneenaun, Clonbur, county Galway.
French (Brooklodge) At least two generations of Frenches, a junior branch of the Frenches of Tyrone, lived on the Brooklodge estate in the late 18th century. It was held on a lease dated 1775 from Ambrose Deane to Christopher French. The lease was bought from the Frenches by Thomas Hynes in 1808 and sold on in 1813 to the Blakes of Ballyglunin, with whom the Frenches had intermarried.