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Sunday 21 September 2014

Couple's wedding plans up in air after hotel's sudden closure

Elaine Keogh

Published 18/01/2013 | 05:00

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Tina Fagan from Athboy has her wedding booked for July in the Old Darnley Lodge in Athboy - now that the hotel has closed she doesn't know where she stands

A BRIDE and groom-to-be have been left wondering whether their wedding will go ahead after a local hotel unexpectedly closed.

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A sit-in is currently taking place at the Old Darnley Lodge Hotel in Athboy, Co Meath, with 42 staff vowing to occupy the property until they get an assurance from management they will give them their statutory entitlements.

Staff said that at 10pm on Wednesday they were told the hotel was closing immediately.

The bride-to-be, Tina Fagan (28), who was due to hold her reception at the venue on July 13, said last night she had received no call from the hotel management informing her of the unfortunate turn of events.

"I got no email, no phone call, nothing from the hotel," said Ms Fagan.

She and fiance Noel Phelan (25), have been saving for their wedding for the last two years and now fear they may not get their deposit back. It is just 25 weeks to what they hope will be their 'big day'.

"If the hotel doesn't reopen we may have to put the wedding back to next year. I looked to see if I could get another hotel this year and it is really hard," Tina said last night.

They had agreed a wedding package with the hotel so that 80 family members and friends would be at the dinner and another 60 for the evening.

"We have been saving for this. I have my wedding dress bought, the bridesmaid dresses bought, the shoes got, the photographer paid and the band and DJ booked," said childcare worker Tina.

The couple's two daughters Saoirse (5) and Aoife (8 months) are set to be flower girls.

Tina, who is from Athboy, said having the reception in the town meant her family could walk home and not have to worry about staying somewhere.

Aideen Andrews, who worked as a receptionist at the hotel, said staff will take it in turns to remain on the premises until they get satisfaction.

"The company has not been liquidated and we want to meet management and get them to put it into liquidation," she added.

A SIPTU spokesperson said that until the liquidation process begins staff cannot get their statutory entitlements.

Representatives of the hotel management did not return calls for comment.

Irish Independent

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