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Saturday 30 August 2014

Millionaire residents call for gates due to safety fears

Fiona Dillon

Published 05/05/2014 | 09:58

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RESIDENTS of the upmarket Abington development in Malahide want to boost security with electronic entrance gates.

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Nicknamed Millionaires Row, some of Ireland's best know celebrities live in the development which has just 50 houses, including radio host Nicky Byrne and his wife Georgina.

Ireland international star Robbie Keane and his wife Claudine also bought their six-bedroomed property there last year.

Despite previously being denied permission to erect three-metre iron gates at the entrance to Abington, residents are now seeking to build a smaller set of electronic entrance gates to improve security, providing them with greater peace of mind.

It has emerged that a letter was sent by the residents' planning consultant last month to Fingal County Council. In it, householders at Abington claimed they are "greatly concerned for their personal safety" because of recent "reported incidents of burglary, theft and suspicious activity".

The proposed gate would be little over 1.2 metres.

An Bord Pleanala had vetoed plans to build gates at the estate around eight years ago, as it feared setting a precedent for the construction of "gated communities".

Fingal county's development plan advises against the construction of gated estates because they "serve to exclude and divide communities."

However, the residents say that the gates will be opened throughout daylight hours, "similar to the opening and closing times considered appropriate by the council in relation to public-park amenities."

In addition, they say their proposed gates will integrate visually with the existing wall around the estate, and will allow for 24-hour pedestrian access.

They point out that a nearby apartment development, St Werburghs, was granted permission to install gates after promising to provide a pedestrian gate and daytime access for cars.

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