Tuesday 17 September 2019

Disco tragedy hotel to stay open despite future plan for luxury homes

Victim of Cookstown disco tragedy Lauren Bullock (17)
Victim of Cookstown disco tragedy Lauren Bullock (17)
Connor Currie
Morgan Barnard

Ryan McAleer

The owner of the Greenvale Hotel where three young people died has said the venue will remain open for the foreseeable future, despite applying to demolish the building and replace it with luxury homes.

Lauren Bullock (17), Morgan Barnard (17) and 16-year-old Connor Currie died outside Michael McElhatton's venue in Cookstown, Co Tyrone, before a St Patrick's night disco.

In the days after, Mr McElhatton said he had been left "deeply shocked and saddened by the traumatic events".

In April, he agreed to only host weddings and private functions at the hotel ahead of a full entertainment licence renewal in October.

Three months on from the tragedy, the hotelier has submitted a planning application to Mid-Ulster District Council to bulldoze the entire hotel and replace it with five new luxury homes. The architectural drawings provided to planning officials show five two-storey 2,700 sq ft houses, each with a stand-alone garage, surrounded by walls and accessed by an electric gate.

Mr McElhatton confirmed that he was behind the planning application, but said he had no immediate plans to stop trading as a hotelier on the site.

"There are no immediate plans for a change of use of the premises, which will continue with its current operations for the foreseeable future," he said.

Instead, it is understood that the planning application is linked to wrangling between hotels in Cookstown and the Mid-Ulster District Council.

Councillors have recently passed a plan for the local authority which seeks to protect existing tourism sites against development.

Irish Independent

Editor's Choice

Also in Irish News