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Priory Hall families in street vigil

RESIDENTS of the Priory Hall apartments held a candlelit vigil to mark the date when they should have been allowed return home.

More than 100 people who were moved out of the complex because of fire risks took part in the vigil last night.

A court deadline of November 28 had been set for the necessary repair works to be carry out at Priory Hall, but they now fear there is little hope of them getting home for Christmas.

As many as 240 residents are still in limbo more than a month after they were forced out of their homes over fire safety concerns.

The High Court initially gave developer Thomas McFeely and his Coalport Building Company Ltd, until yesterday to complete the necessary repairs on the 187-unit complex in Donaghmede, north Dublin, to meet fire code standards.

But according to Cllr Brian McDowell the only thing happening was a silent candlelight vigil organised by the residents to highlight their plight.

"We have a situation where the Minister for the Environment is refusing to meet with them, no work is being done onsite, residents are still living in hotels and the council are in the Supreme Court trying to avoid paying for the housing needs of the residents," said the Labour councillor.

Some work has been done on about 40 apartments but the building remains a firetrap. Residents spokesman Darren Kelly said their biggest fear is the residents will be forced to pay their own temporary accommodation costs as well as their mortgages, which no one can afford to do.