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Thursday 2 February 2023 Dublin: 10°C
# Dublin Mountains
These new pics show what the controversial Hell Fire Club visitor centre would look like
Plans have been officially lodged with An Bord Pleanála.

Artists impression of proposed visitors centre (1) Anthony Curran The proposed new visitor centre. Anthony Curran

IMAGES OF THE planned new visitor centre for the Dublin Mountains have been published by South Dublin County Council.

The new project, it’s planned, will provide a ‘gateway’ to the area, and would be located close to the landmark Hell Fire Club – a 1700s shooting lodge overlooking the city at Montpelier Hill.

At an estimated cost of €15 million, the Council says the centre would be constructed from natural materials and integrated into the landscape “with extensive panoramic views of Dublin City”.

Many locals, however, have expressed their objections to the project.

Speaking back in May, one local told this site she thought the planned project would “destroy the area”. Another said she was concerned habitats would be disrupted.

shutterstock_663721750 Shutterstock / VVlasovs The Hell Fire Club. Shutterstock / VVlasovs / VVlasovs


A post on the ‘Save the Hellfire’ Facebook page last Friday noted that plans for the centre had been officially lodged with An Bord Pleanála and encouraged people to register their objections.

More than 2,000 people have signed a petition opposing the plans.

Aerial view of model of proposed visitors centre (1) Anthony Curran An aerial view of the planned project. Anthony Curran

According to the Council, which is working with Coillte on the project:

The Dublin Mountains Visitor Centre development is founded on a vision that the history, landscape, heritage and amenity of the Dublin Mountains should be promoted as a resource for the enjoyment of the people of South Dublin and for visitors to the area from elsewhere in Ireland and abroad.
The project will also provide long term economic benefits by increasing tourism, generating additional spend on local goods and services and creating new employment opportunities in South Dublin County.

The planned visitor centre will include, according to SDCC:

  • A dedicated interpretative exhibition and educational centre
  • A café and shop
  • A ramblers’ lounge and toilets.
  • Enhanced access to the site “with increased car parking and public transport, road improvements and the construction of a new footpath to the site”
  • Improved quality of walks “incorporating an iconic tree-top walkway/bridge from Montpelier Hill into Massy’s Wood”

View of proposed visitors centre from Hell Fire Wood Anthony Curran The view of the planned centre from Hell Fire Wood. Anthony Curran

As part of the project, areas of commercial pine forest would be removed and replaced with predominantly indigenous native tree species.

The Council and Coillte, according to a statement, have taken local objections on board in drawing up their plans, “ensuring the preservation of the landscape, ecology and heritage features” of the area.

The planning application can be downloaded from the Bord Pleanála website.

Read: ‘It’s complete madness’: Two Dublin councillors want a cable car from Tallaght to the Hellfire Club

Read: Major megalithic art find at Hellfire Club passage tomb

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