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Clontarf Baths set to reopen in six weeks after €2 million facelift

The facility will have a fully licensed café bar.

The Clontarf Baths in the foreground.
The Clontarf Baths in the foreground.
Image: photopol via Flickr/CC

A €2 MILLION refurbishment of the existing Clontarf Seawater Baths and a new, fully licensed pavilion café bar and restaurant are 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 Limited a declaratory order which means that when the development is completed in accordance with planning permissions it will automatically receive a seven-day drinks license.

Barrister Dorothy Collins told the court that the €2 million enterprise was almost complete and would open by mid-September at the latest. She said the redevelopment of the baths would provide a fully modernised open air swimming pool for members of the public.

David Cullen, co-director with his mother Mary Cullen in the company which has owned the baths for more than quarter of a century, told the court the new development would literally serve all of the city and even 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 and walkways sited between the Clontarf-Howth Road and the Irish Sea.

Cullen said his company’s development completely reconstructed and refurbished existing sea water baths that had existed on the site since the 1890s and, like the old baths, 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.

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 sea water would be warmed up.

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.

Collins, who appeared for the company with Wallis Solicitors, told Judge Groarke that a drinks license attached to an existing premises had to be extinguished in order for it to be transferred to the Clontarf company.

A director of Browns Bar on the Naas Road, Co Dublin told the court the establishment had ceased to operate as a licensed premises and was to be redeveloped as a bicycle sales outlet.

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

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