Lady Dufferin


Helen Selina Sheridan, Lady Dufferin was born on the 18th January 1807 and died on the 13th June 1867.  She was married to Price Blackwood, 4th Baron Dufferin and Clandeboye. Helen was an accomplished songwriter and playwright, following in the footsteps of her grandfather Richard Brinsley Sheridan.

Her son the 1st Marquess of Dufferin and Ava had a deep love for his mother and encouraged the distinguished poets of the time Robert Browning, Rudyard Kipling, Lord Houghton and others to write poems about his mother and Helen’s Tower which he had built for her.  The best known of these poems is Helen’s Tower by Alfred, Lord Tennyson, which he wrote in 1861.

His devotion to his mother, who was dying of breast cancer, was so great that he had a nearby bay named after her, Helen’s Bay and he built a railway station in her name which linked the growing area of Helen’s Bay to the nearby city of Belfast.