Wednesday 21 February 2018

Tramyard cafe is closed due to fire safety concerns

'The Tramyard', Dalkey. Pic Steve Humphreys
'The Tramyard', Dalkey. Pic Steve Humphreys

Ray Managh

The Tramyard Cafe Bar Restaurant in Dalkey Village has been closed down by order of the High Court until it complies with fire safety regulations.

Bank-appointed receiver Ken Fennell, of Deloitte, was granted a temporary High Court injunction directing David Coulson, operator of the cafe bar and restaurant, to pull down the shutters.

Mr Coulson now has to comply with an enforcement order issued by Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown County Council earlier this month directing that the premises close on grounds of fire safety.

It led to the cancellation of the Dalkey Lobster Festival this year.

Barrister Stephen B Byrne, counsel for the Receiver, told Mr Justice Tony O'Connor that the closure was primarily being brought because of "serious concerns" about public safety as well as preserving the value of the building.

Mr Byrne said Mr Fennell had only days ago become aware of the fire safety concerns and the issuing of the enforcement notice on August l8 last.

He said the fire safety concerns, first reported to Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown County Council by a senior garda, related to a wooden gazebo built outside the premises.

Mr Byrne said that, despite the local authority's decision to issue an enforcement notice ordering the closure until safety regulations had been complied with, the cafe continued to trade.

Comply

He said the planned Lobster Festival had been cancelled after Mr Coulson had been informed in writing of the county council's concerns.

Mr Byrne told the court that failure to comply with an enforcement order amounted to a criminal offence and Mr Fennell had no option other than to bring High Court proceedings.

The court heard Mr Coulson operates the Tramyard on a purported lease. The premises, currently up for sale, is owned by another party and had been put up as security for loans provided by Ulster Bank. Mr Fennell had been appointed receiver last year by financial fund Promontoria (Ltd), which had acquired the loans from Ulster Bank.

Judge O'Connor, granting the injunction on an ex-parte basis, particularly noted the evidence in relation to fire safety concerns.

The judge adjourned the matter to next week.

The Lobster Festival was cancelled at short notice on Thursday evening last week. A message on the festival's website stated that the event "has been cancelled due to circumstances beyond our control. Apologies for the inconvenience caused".

A Facebook message said: "We can assure you that nobody is more upset than the Lobster Fest Committee. We are absolutely devastated that we've had to take this course of action; please trust that we did everything in our power to avoid this outcome."

Irish Independent

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