Sunday 25 February 2018

Westlife star's €1.3m bakery now worth a lot less dough

Shane Filan and his wife Gillian
Shane Filan and his wife Gillian
Caroline Crawford

Caroline Crawford

IT was the €1.3m property deal that was meant to provide a mouthwatering profit for Shane Filan and his brothers, but now the premises is worth only €80,000.

The Westlife star's property company, Shaflin Developments, took out a loan of €1.3m from Bank of Ireland to buy the old Garvey's bakery in Ballina, Co Mayo, in December 2007.

They had ambitious plans to build a three-storey retail unit on the O'Rahilly Street site, hoping to attract some big label names to the town.

However, five years later, no work had begun and initial planning permission ran out last month. The unit is boarded up, and has been the subject of complaints by local residents because of its condition.

As part of his bankruptcy petition lodged earlier this year, the singer valued the property at €200,000.

However, receivers who now have control of the property are trying to sell it for €80,000.

Last week, Ballina Town Council granted an extension of planning permission following an application by the receivers of specific assets of Shane, Finbar and Peter Filan. They said no work had yet begun on the site "due to economical factors". They added that any date for commencement was "undetermined".

A spokeswoman for the council confirmed that the project had received the extension approval with the same conditions as previously stipulated.

She added that there had been no objections to the extension, and the development now had the green light to proceed until 2018.


However, hopes of achieving a sizeable selling price appear dashed – the premises was advertised in the local 'Western People' recently with a guide of only €80,000.

Plans for the premises include demolishing the building and erecting a three-storey retail unit in its place. The 572sq metre store was originally linked to French fashion label Morgan. Shane Filan had previous links to the franchise when he opened an outlet in Sligo in 2002, but that ceased trading in 2008.

Irish Independent

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