Fighting like cats ... over planned pub
MULTI-MILLIONAIRE British composer of Cats, Starlight Express, Evita and Phantom of the Opera, Andrew Lloyd Webber is likely to have a fight on his hands over a planned pub, if the residents of a Co Tipperary village have their way.
Plans by local businessman Jim O'Flaherty to build a ?2m pub and restaurant about half a mile from the village of Killusty, close to where the composer owns a 400-acre stud farm and 12th century Kiltinan Castle, have been halted for the next few months.
Planning permission for the Finn MaCouls pub was granted on March 8 with 23 attached conditions by South Tipperary County Council but an appeal to An Bord Pleannala was lodged by Jonathon Webster, general manager of Kiltinan Castle, on the composer's behalf, on April 5.
A decision is expected in August.
Mr Lloyd Webber has objected to the proposed pub on the grounds that it will be an eyesore, it will not enhance the area and would be of no benefit to those living in the village and neighbouring town of Fethard.
A petition has been signed by more than 800 people in Killusty and Fethard protesting at the composer's objection to the pub and have given it to the manager of Kiltinan Castle.
Mr Lloyd Webber bought the luxury £2m retreat for his horse-loving third wife Madeline in 1995. They also have homes in Berkshire, New York and the south of France.
Local reaction to the opposition to the pub is one of dismay.
Local man Walter Maloney said the 500 villagers cannot understand why the composer would be against the idea of bringing employment to the area.
Everybody was disappointed.
The pub would be a long way from Kiltinan Castle, said Mr Maloney.