“We aren’t giving up. We will fight as much as we can.”
These are the words of Stephen Cunningham, manager of the popular Paris Bakery in Dublin, following the news that the bakery is set to be demolished with the loss of 70 jobs.
The demolition of a number of buildings on Moore Street will make way for a €900m shopping centre development in Dublin city centre.
Agency Chartered Land was granted planning permission for the development in 2010 but construction has yet to begin and the land is now owned by Nama.
“We’re starting an online petition tomorrow ,” Mr Cunningham told independent.ie.
“We’ll present this to government and show them what the business means to people.
“What will it cost to take 70 jobs away and put 70 families on the dole and supply them with medical cards? It just doesn’t make sense.”
Mr Cunningham said the news Paris Bakery would be demolished came as a complete shock.
He claimed the company were encouraged by Chartered Land to invest €150,000 in renovations in December 2012 and were assured that there would be no shopping centre development in the area for at least seven to ten years.
He also claimed no surveys have been done and Chartered Land have no permission to demolish the buildings.
The bakery is located next door to 14-17 Moore Street, which was declared a national monument for the role they played in the 1916 Rising. These building will be preserved as part of the proposed development.
Chartered Land said it had approval for demolition of the bakery buildings next door.
“In June they want to close these doors. Then they can claim the street is derelict with no thriving businesses and in need of the development,” Mr Cunningham said.
“This business was started with four staff in November 2010. It has grown to a staff of 70,” he continued.
“It’s not about the money here for us, it’s about the jobs and the 70 people we employ.
“I work 80 hours a week and I’m not complaining. I want to come in here, I enjoy coming here. The staff leave here and go home and continue baking for their own families, they wouldn’t do that if they didn’t care about what they do.”