Dictionary of Irish Architects 1720 - 1940

Nurseryman, of 1 College Green, Dublin, and Inchicore, active from the 1780s until the 1810s. By 1798 he had been joined in business by a son, presumably the Thomas Simpson who is listed at the College Green premises by 1814 and continued to trade there until the 1830s. In 1792 Benjamin Simpson won the competition for designing the Merrion Square gardens, which he was also responsible for carrying out. He was one of sixty entrants in the competition and owed his success, according to the Dublin Chronicle 'to the assistance of that very ingenious artist Mr James Barralet'.(1) Later in the 1790s he presented plants to the new Botanic Gardens at Glasnevin.(2)



All information in this entry not otherwise accounted for is from Wilson's Dublin Directory for 1798, 1806, 1814 and 1831, and from the entries on Benjamin and Thomas Simpson in Ray Desmond, Dictionary of British & Irish Botanists and Horticulturalists (1994), 628,629.

(1) Dublin Chronicle, 11 Jun 1791.
(2) E. Charles Nelson & Eileen M. McCracken, The Brightest Jewel: A History of the National Botanic Gardens, Glasnevin, Dublin (1987), 48; at this stage he had a partner named Sibert or Sibbert, who appears with him, at the Inchicore address only, in Wilson's Directory for 1798.

1 work entries listed in chronological order for SIMPSON, BENJAMIN [2]*

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Date: 1792
Nature: BS wins competition for designing same from among 60 competitors. Also responsible for all planting and ground work. 'He owes his success in a good degree to the assistance of that very ingenious artist, Mr James Barralet'.
Refs: Dublin Chronicle, 11 Jun 1791