Ben Dunne has hit out at online trolls who have been criticising him over his decision to keep nearly all of his gyms shut. amid the coronavirus pandemic
Mr Dunne has gyms in 10 locations but plans to reopen just one facility in Blanchardstown until he feels it is safe to open the others.
In a video shared online, he said he has received a number of "displeasing" messages from those unhappy with his decision to hold off reopening his other locations.
He said: "Insults, the way they have been flying at me, run off me like water off a duck.
"But I want to tell you one thing, it shows the mentality of your mind. To be sending emails the type of which I am receiving on social media is to say the least, displeasing.
"But it’s not displeasing me because I am taking no notice of them. Keep sending them, and I’ll keep deleting them."
Mr Dunne said customers who want a refund will receive one, but pleaded with members to be patient as staff have been inundated with "thousands" of requests.
"I put up a video on my website yesterday and the response to say the least was surprising," he said.
"I didn’t think there would be so many people who don’t understand common sense. I have made it perfectly clear to everybody who is a member of Ben Dunne gyms that if they require a refund, they will get a refund.
"We are dealing with thousands of them, we are making phone calls to people and we are doing our very best," he added.
The 71-year-old said his gyms will no longer be offering showering or pool facilities as he feels they pose a health and safety risk.
"We will not be the cheapest gym in the market any longer because we are after quality, safety, the wellbeing of my staff and the members, however many I get I do not know," he said.
"Ben Dunne gyms will not have showers in the future, we will not have pools in the future. We will not have a lot of things that we did have which were health and safety issues."