WHILE Wexford County Council’s acquisition of the old Dun Mhuire Theatre has been plagued with legal complications, council Chief Executive Tom Enright expects that the once iconic building will be fully demolished within the coming months.
The completion of Wexford County Council’s purchase, believed to be in the region of €400,000, was hindered by issues surrounding a grant paid by the Department of Arts over 15 years ago.
While this issue has been largely resolved, there are others in relation to title etc which Mr Enright says “take a little bit of time to resolve”.
However, with demolition work set to begin on the old Tesco/Crazy Prices site in the coming weeks, Mr Enright is hopeful that work at the theatre will directly follow.
"The purchase of the Dun Mhuire, thankfully, is really in the final stages now,” he said. “There were issues with that government grant and issues with title which had to be resolved.
"I would expect that the demolition of the Dun Mhuire will take place in the first half of this year. We have planning permission and will be looking to push on with public realm works there and a civic space.”
It’s the local authority’s hope that the demolition of the old Tesco building and Dun Mhuire will have a domino effect and will provoke the owners of other sites around South Main Street to take action too.
"You would hope that work on Lowney’s Mall would follow and then we are also engaging with the owners of the Rope Walk car park to see how that site can be developed too.
"A new town plan is scheduled for the end of the year and we will be looking at a number of strategic sites and creating a master plan for them in order to put pressure on the owners to either develop them or alternatively sell them to the council so that we can develop them.”