Clerk of works responsible, in succession to WILLIAM FORSYTH  for executing ROBERT WILLIAM FURZE BRETTINGHAM' s designs for the enlargement of Hillsborough Castle, Co. Down, between November 1795 and October 1797. Robert Sharland was born in Barnstaple, Devon, and is probably the person of the same name, a son of John Sharland and his wife Margaret, who was christened in Barnstaple on 28 October 1771. He received his architectural training in London, perhaps under Brettingham, who may then have sent him to Ireland to supervise the work at Hillsborough. He advertised as a land surveyor, engineer and timber merchant in the Belfast Newsletter on 15 December 1809. He appears eventually to have settled in Ballylintough, Annahilt, Co. Down, where he was responsible for repairs to the church and for the enlargement of the Female School circa 1820-1823. He died on 6 May1833, having made provision in his will for the establishment of almshouses at Annahilt.
See E.R.R. Green & F.M. Jope, 'Patron and architect: an example of relations in the late 18th century', Ulster Journal of Archaeology 24-25 (1961-2), 147-151. In 1799 the agent, Thomas Lane, wrote to Lord Downshire complaining of Sharland's failure to produce accounts of his expenditure (PRONI, D607/G/109, see PRONI e-catalogue, http://applications.proni.gov.uk/LL_DCAL_PRONI_ECATNI/ResultDetails.aspx, last visited, Nov 2011).
Samuel Lewis, A Topographical dictionary of Ireland (1837), I, 26; according to www.familysearch.org a Robert Sharland, son of John and Margaret Sharland was christened in Barnstable on 28 Oct 1771.
Belfast Newsletter,15 Dec 1809, cited by Douglas G. Lockhart, 'The land surveyor in Northern Ireland before the coming of the Ordnance Survey circa 1840', Irish Geography 9 (1976), 107, and Sarah Bendall, ed., Dictionary of Land Surveyors and Local Map-Makers of Great Britain and Ireland 1530-1850 (2nd edition, 1997), II, 459.
See note 3, above.
RCB Library, 'An account of of all sums of money levied for building and repairing of churches...June 1824' (information from Frank Keohane); he is listed as patron of the male and female schools at Annahilt in the 7th Appendix of the Fifteenth Report of the Society for the Education of the Poor (1827) .
Lewis, loc. cit., note 2, above.
PRONI, T. 401; for the almshouses, seee C.E.B. Brett, Buildings of North County Down (UAHS, 2002), 213.