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    • #708047

      Eimear Haughey can’t build home near parents
      From:The Irish Independent
      Wednesday, 17th August, 2005

      EIMEAR Haughey has been refused planning permission for a new house near her father’s mansion at Kinsealy.

      She is to appeal Fingal County Council’s rejection of her plan for a one-off dwelling just a few hundred metres from Abbeville, home of former Taoiseach Charles Haughey and his wife Maureen.

      And she has suggested that, if the appeal to An Bord Pleanala succeeds, her parents may join her in the new house.

      She says she wants to build it “for my own personal occupancy and possibly my elderly parents”.

      Abbeville has been bought by Manor Park Homes.

      But the ailing former Taoiseach and Mrs Haughey are still living in the famous house.

      It would be a short move for them to their daughter’s new home off Baskin Lane, near the Malahide Road.

      Eimear Haughey is president of the Irish Thoroughbred Breeders Association and chairman of Goffs Bloostock Sales.

      She runs the Abbeville and Meadow Court Stud.

      Fingal County Council shot down her application for a one-off two-storey home in the scenic area, to be “sandwiched” between the country piles of her brothers Sean and Ciaran Haughey.

      In a letter to An Bord Pleanala appealing the refusal, Ms Haughey, who runs a thriving horse stud business in the Curragh where she now lives, says she wants to move back to her home area to be near her parents and siblings.

      The letter, obtained by the Irish Independent, says: “My parents are ageing and I wish to be near them and also close to my extended family.”

      The house plan was for a three-bedroom 390 square metre residence on a 3,950sq mt site at Abbeville.

      The council threw out her application on the grounds that the site is zoned as a green belt, special conservation area, and Ms Haughey failed to demonstrate that the house is needed for a person “actively engaged in farming the family stud farm”.

      She also failed to demonstrate “a genuine need to live in a green-belt area”.

      The proposed development contravened the current Fingal development plan, and its entrance at Baskin Lane would crease “a serious traffic hazard”.

      The council planning officer said in his report that, while there was a small number of horses, “there was no evidence of an ongoing stud farm”.

      This is disputed by architects acting on behalf of Ms Haughey.

      They have sent a letter outlining her bona fides as a person who should be allowed a one-off house under the new planning guidelines which have been introduced this year.

      Ms Haughey says her site at Abbeville on the Baskin Road is between the houses of two of her brothers.

      Her third brother has built a house on the far side of the property on the Feltrim Road.

      “My parents live in the main house at Abbeville,” says her letter.

      In it, she takes issue with some of the findings of the planners.

      There has been a stud farm in Abbeville under her control and management for the past 30 years, producing thoroughbreds and half-breds, she says.

      “There are 27 loose boxes, a paddock and a large schooling barn. Most of the fields are stud-fenced.

      In this respect, the report of the council inspector is inaccurate. I traded from 1974 to 1989 as Abbeville Stud and many successful racehorses were bred on the property, including Mister Majestic, a Newmarket Group 1 winner.

      “In 1989, following my marriage, my husband and I bought another stud farm in Co Kildare called Meadow Court Stud but I continued to run both farms as one business and have continued to do to the current day.

      “The turnover of my business would average approximately €2,000,000 per annum.”

      She goes on to say there is endless evidence available that her registered business name is Abbeville and Meadow Court Studs, including all her audited accounts, as well as payments to the Collector General.

      “Thoroughbred horses are very valuable animals and require a great deal of care and attention.

      “As I have not been living on the farm at Abbeville, I have had to use Abbeville for horses that do not require intensive attention at a given time of the year.”

      As the number of horses at Meadow Court was increasing year by year, “it is of particular importance that I keep excess numbers at Abbeville.

      “For the last 35 years I have been involved in the community of Kinsealy. My friends and family live there and it is where I call home,” Ms Haughey says.

      “I have reached a time in my life where I would like to be in a position to return home and that is why I would like to build a house for my own personal occupancy (and possibly my elderly parents) on this site.”

      Ms Haughey says she was advised that, under the new government guidelines, she qualified as someone entitled to build a residence for her own occupancy in an area zoned as green belt.

      Abbeville was bought by Manor Park Homes for €45m in 2003 for luxury housing.

      However, Fingal County Council has scaled back the residential element of the plan to allow for more tourism-related development

    • #760312

      I think this is a ridiculous decision by Fingal. What on earth are they playing at. How can you justify refusing permission to someone with as any western councillor wil tell you, a jusifiable connection to the land when all around you have let countryside be swallowed up by dreary housing estates! Its totally bizarre. Regardless of who is invloved its just plain wrong to refuse permission on the grounds outlined. Green belt? Special Conservation Area? Well then how come the other two Haughey houses were allowed? How come they are entertaining this new tourism development of Abbeyville lands? How come they have laid the North Fringe sewage system to facilitate further development?

    • #760313
      Mark Harrington

      And how come the purchase of Abbeville to Manor Park for “luxury housing” was
      permitted – only a few hundred metres from the site in question?

    • #760314

      Caveat Emptor

      It is up to the buyer to beware or make themselves fully confident that they are acheiving value when purchasing any type of land but particularly development land; legally nobody can stop a willing buyer paying whatever they like to a willing seller with full clean title; The description of for luxury housing would be based on very poor journalistic interpretation or a radical loss of the generally very high standards of planning employed by Fingal.

    • #760315
      Mark Harrington

      Here in the US, developers exercise the caveat emptor principle
      to the extent that they are quite certain of their development
      prospects (through discussions with local officials and planning
      and zoning boards) prior to purchase. Our firm regularly does
      planning layouts which are somewhat speculative. If the owner
      gets positive reaction to the concept, he will buy the land.
      So I just assumed that Manor Park had some concept proposal
      on the books more or less and that their proposal had garnered
      some local political support. If so, then to raise this ruckus over
      Ms Haughey’s proposal seemed quite hypocritical.

      Thanks for the enlightenment, that’s quite a gamble by Manor
      Park, then.

    • #760316


      that is brilliantly put “that their proposal had garnered some local political support”

      A problem that planners have in this country is dealing with constant political intereference into what is a purely technical field i.e. does a particular plot of land have the capacity to accomodate a particular development proposal without significant negative impacts.

      It is possible that the planners in the case of the first two one-off houses were subject to political intereference and that in this case they felt that the cumulative impacts of another house roughly the size of 4 typical houses in a Special Area of Conservation would constitute a significant risk to the environment in this location.

      Re: Manor Park they knew the zonings and environmental designations prior to purchase it is up to them to find ways of applying that do not compromise the regulatory framework.

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