The thirst that drove Mrs P to seek out information about William Ireland, associate of that omega of the English landscape style, Capability Brown, remains unslaked by my last note.

It would seem that, since he died in 1824 at the age of 80, he was born in 1744. He was therefore not the William Ireland who worked as a gardener at Wallington in 1744. That Ireland rented a house in Cambo, and seems to have left in 1751, the year during which Brown left Stowe, but he was clearly a generation or so older than Capability’s man.

One might find a connection here with the William Ireland christened in Newcastle-upon-Tyne on 26 January 1746 and found by James Collett-White, but I would think it more likely that he was one of the Woburn Abbey Irelands – another William Ireland, more likely to be the Capability man’s father, planted the Evergreens there, with advice from the great plantsman, Philip Miller, in about 1744 – and it was to Woburn Abbey that his children returned towards the end of the century.

As Mrs P has commented, the situation is further complicated by the ancient settlement of Ireland, on the outskirts of Southill. The name predates the 18th century, but who knows, perhaps that is where the family originated, before migrating to Woburn.