Friday 19 January 2018

JD Wetherspoon chairman hails Dublin hotel plan

JD Wetherspoon company chairman Tim Martin
JD Wetherspoon company chairman Tim Martin
Ellie Donnelly

Ellie Donnelly

British Pub chain JD Wetherspoon is set to create 200 new jobs in Dublin as it develops a new pub and hotel in the capital's city centre.

Work on the 98-bedroom hotel, which will be located on Camden street in Dublin, is expected to commence in early 2018, with the pub and hotel expected to open in early 2019.

Announcing the investment, company chairman Tim Martin, who founded the low-priced bar and restaurant chain in 1979, said that the group was looking forward to developing the Camden street site into a fantastic pub and hotel.

"Our pubs in the Republic of Ireland are thriving and we are confident that the pub and hotel will be a great asset to Dublin and act as a catalyst for other businesses to invest in the city," Mr Martin said.

The development is the company's biggest single development in the European Union, and the announcement comes just 12 months after the UK voted to leave the EU.

Mr Martin, who was a vocal supporter of the Leave campaign, has in the past accused EU leaders of adopting a bullying attitude since the Brexit vote, which he said risks damaging sales of German beer and French wine.

Mr Martin has also previously taken aim at the former UK chancellor of exchequer George Osborne, the International Monetary Fund, the Bank of England, Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley and PwC, who he claims were too negative about the impact of a Leave vote in the referendum.

Announcing the development yesterday Mr Martin said that trade and investment would continue "inside or outside the EU, as the Brexit campaign has emphasised".

"The biggest investors in the UK in the catering industry, for example, are American - Starbucks, McDonald's and others, and the EU and UK have no trade deal with America," Mr Martin added.

The JD Wetherspoon group has already established a number of pubs in Ireland including the Forty Foot in Dun Laoghaire, the Three Tun Tavern in Blackrock, and the Linen Weaver in Cork.

In March this year the company announced profits before tax of £51.4m (€58.3m) for the six months to 22 January 2017, while the group's like-for-like sales were up 3.3pc year-on-year.

Irish Independent

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