herald

Tuesday 25 September 2018

Clontarf sea baths granted licence to serve pints at new €2m pool complex

Artist's rendition of the refurbished Clontarf Seawater Baths
Artist's rendition of the refurbished Clontarf Seawater Baths

A €2m refurbishment of the Clontarf Seawater Baths as well as a new pavilion cafe bar and restaurant is due to open in about six weeks' time, the Circuit Licensing Court has heard.

Circuit Court President Mr Justice Raymond Groarke granted Clontarf Baths and Assembly Rooms Company a declaratory order.

This means that when the development is completed in accordance with planning permissions, it will automatically get a seven-day drinks licence.

Barrister Dorothy Collins told the court that the €2m enterprise was almost complete and would open by mid-September at the latest.

Unique

She said the redevelopment of the baths would provide a fully-modernised open-air swimming pool for the public.

David Cullen, co-director with his mother Mary Cullen in the company, told the court the new development would serve all of the city and parts of Co Wicklow, as the Dart ran very close to it.

He told Judge Groarke that the seawater baths was in a unique position within Dublin City Council's linear park consisting of the grassy acres between the Clontarf-Howth Road and the Irish Sea.

Mr Cullen said his company's development completely reconstructed and refurbished existing seawater baths that had existed on the site since the 1890s.

Like the old baths, the development would use water from Dublin Bay.

He said the very large pool contained a sluice that would allow filtered and clean Irish Sea water to enter and pump it out again in a refreshment process every few weeks.

Mr Cullen told the court that the water would be maintained at a high level of filtration and cleanliness and, while swimming in the open air pool would be at natural environmental temperatures, there would be a water heating facility.

The company had not yet decided on what basis or when the seawater would be warmed.

He said work on the project had started last September following only a single objection by a local resident.

Full permission had been granted on an appeal to An Bord Pleanala.

Ms Collins told Judge Groarke that a drinks licence attached to an existing premises had to be extinguished in order for it to be transferred to the Clontarf company.

Judge Groarke granted the declaratory order pending completion of works in line with planning permissions.

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