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Sunday 17 December 2017

Devastation and anger as residents move out of fire-risk flats

Niall O'Reilly, of the residents committee, in his now
empty apartment
Niall O'Reilly, of the residents committee, in his now empty apartment
Residents at Priory Hall, Donaghmede, vacate their homes as they have been declared unsafe by the fire inspectors

Fiona Ellis

RESIDENTS of an apartment complex that was ordered to be evacuated over fire safety concerns, were last night packing to leave their homes.

Trucks and vans filled the street yesterday as residents of Priory Hall in north Dublin packed up their belongings and evacuated their homes.

On Friday, the High Court ordered the evacuation of the housing complex in Donaghmede because of serious concerns over fire safety.

Some 137 out of 187 apartments that make up the complex are occupied by private owners or tenants.

Today at 11am the residents, including elderly people and families with young children, will find out their fate in the High Court when a judge will make a decision on what will happen to the residents.

Niall O'Reilly is on the residents' committee and has lived at Priory Hall in a two-bedroom duplex with his fiancée since 2007.

Last night he told the Irish Independent the general atmosphere at the complex was one of devastation and anger.

"People are devastated that this is happening. People have been so upset all weekend and many are crying as they pack up their houses."

At their own cost, many of the residents have rented lock-ups in a facility in Finglas to store their belongings. The facility offered a 50pc discount to residents of the complex.

Others rented vans and trucks and brought their belongings to relatives' homes. As well as the stress of the evacuation, residents are afraid of what will happen to their homes once the complex is empty.

"People are worried that once they leave it will be open season. Some people are moving everything; some people are not," added Mr O'Reilly.

Irish Independent

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