Politician tries to stop his eviction over attic conversion
A County councillor and his wife have started a High Court action aimed at preventing Wicklow County Council from evicting them from their home in a row over an attic conversion.
The action has been brought by Sinn Fein's John Brady, who was elected after he topped the poll in Bray in last month's local elections, and his wife Gayle.
Last March the Bradys were served with a notice to quit 63 Kilbride Grove, Bray, Co Wicklow, where they and their five children have lived for 14 years.
Yesterday, the High Court was told that Bray Town Council – which was recently abolished – issued a notice to quit because it claimed the attic conversion posed a fire risk. The Bradys reject the claim.
In a sworn statement, Mr Brady – who was a member of Bray Town Council – said he believed the action was "motivated by personal animosity of council officials towards me".
Cormac O Dulachain, for the couple, said that Mr Brady had been in dispute with the local authority over a number of issues including the death of two firefighters in Bray in 2007.
Mr O Dulachain said that in July 2013 a council inspector conducted a "three- or fourminute inspection" of the Bradys' home.
The couple later received a letter saying the converted attic posed a fire risk and were told to apply to the council for retention of the work, with a fire report from a professional with a minimum of €6.5m indemnity insurance, or restore the house to its original condition.
In their action the Bradys are also seeking declarations from the court that the council's decision is irrational, unreasonable, disproportionate, unlawful and was made in bad faith.
Permission to bring the action was granted, on an ex-parte basis, by Judge Bronagh O'Hanlon. The case will resume later this month.