Saturday 14 December 2019

Iconic pub racked up debts of €1.8m, accounts show

Colm Kelpie

THE iconic pub where The Dubliners were formed had debts of just over €1.8m in the year to the end of last June.

Well-known watering hole O'Donoghue's, beloved of both locals and tourists, stated that it had an operating profit of €280,000 last year. However, the profit and loss account was dragged down by a historic loss.

The Merrion Row pub describes itself as probably the best-known traditional Irish music bar in Dublin.

The Dubliners first began performing there in the 1960s, but many other famous names have also appeared, including Christy Moore, The Fureys, Seamus Ennis and Joe Heaney. Even Bruce Springsteen has popped in.

Accounts filed with the Companies Office for the year to the end of June 2012 show that amounts falling due to creditors within a year totalled €659,432, while the amounts falling due after a year were €1.15m.


The vast bulk of the debt relates to loans, with €203,217 of the sums due within a year relating to bank loans and overdrafts.

However, the pub business also paid €74,000 in corporation tax during the period, following on from the €120,670 that was paid in the previous year.

In 1934, Paddy and Maureen O'Donoghue began running the bar. It was during this time that it became famous for its nightly sessions of traditional Irish music.

In 1977, Co Longford native Dessie Hynes succeeded them as proprietor. The current owners, Oliver and John Mahon, acquired the business in 1988.

The pub hosted a day-long session in tribute to the late Barney McKenna of The Dubliners last April ahead of his funeral. Photos of the band members cover the walls of the bar.

The accounts show that the pub business has €783,362 in cash in hand and at bank.

Irish Independent

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