Louth County Council to house more than 60 families in refurbished Ard Dealgan complex

 PRESS RELEASE

Monday, 5th March 2018

 

Louth County Council to house more than 60 families in refurbished Ard Dealgan complex

 

Development to be renamed Halliday Mills, in honour of local employer Arthur Halliday

 

More than 60 families who are on Louth County Council’s housing list will be accommodated in the Ard Dealgan complex in Dundalk, which will reopen as Halliday Mills next year. Celtic Social Housing Development Co Ltd today (05.03.18) signed a contract with Túath Housing to bring 68 units at the Dundalk development back into use. The complex, which is being refurbished by the development company, will be leased by Túath Housing for a 20-year period and will be available to applicants on Louth County Council’s social housing list.

 

Ard Dealgan, which was built by Tom McFeely’s Coalport Building Company, has been vacant since it was the subject of a Fire Closure Notice in 2009. This followed an inspection which found that the manner of construction of the apartments was poor, with a general non-compliance  of  all  regulatory  matters.  Louth  County  Council  has  spent  more  than

€25,000 since then in physically securing the site, which has been the subject of vandalism, theft, fire and general anti-social behaviour. The Council had begun a Compulsory Purchase Order process when the site was sold out of receivership to Celtic Social Housing Development Co Ltd, which in turn approached the Council with an offer to refurbish the building for social housing. It will now be redeveloped into a 68-unit complex, comprising 10 one-bed, 46 two-bed and 7 three-bed apartments, as well as 3 two-bed and two four-bed duplexes.

 

Commenting, Director of Housing at Louth County Council, Joe McGuinness said: “Ard Dealgan has not only been an eyesore for many years, its health and safety issues meant that a building which had the potential to house more than 60 families lay idle. We are absolutely delighted to have the opportunity to bring this development back into use and we thank Celtic Social Housing Development Co Ltd for offering it for social housing. The complex will be refurbished to a high standard and the developer has already started health and safety compliance measures. The 64 units will provide safe and comfortable accommodation for a range of individuals and families in Louth when they come on stream next year.

 

“This is just one of a number of initiatives that Louth County Council is undertaking as part of the Rebuilding Ireland programme to increase the level of social housing across the county. We have increased the number of social housing units in the county by 170 in the by the end of the year.”

 

Chief Executive of Louth County Council, Joan Martin added: “Louth County Council is a pioneer in the Rebuilding Ireland programme. We were the first county in the country to introduce the Single Stage Departmental Approval Process – in Bothar Brugha, Drogheda - and  we  are  a  national  leader  in  the  compulsory  purchase  of  derelict  or  abandoned properties. We have CPOd 65 properties over the past three years, already providing accommodation for 26 households under this mechanism.

 

“Louth County Council has a target of 208 additional social housing units in 2018 and we are working hard towards achieving that target, which we aim to do through a mixture of CPOs and CALF (Capital Advance Leasing Fund) partnerships with approved housing bodies.

 

“We very much welcome Celtic Social Housing Development Co Ltd’s approach regarding providing Ard Dealgan for social housing purposes and we are interested in hearing from other developers regarding similar arrangements.”

 

Túath Housing chief executive, Sean O’Connor said: “We are delighted to once again partner with Louth County Council on this social housing project, which was funded through CALF. Túath currently manages 175 homes in Louth and we have a development pipeline for approximately 350 homes in the county by the end of 2019. We also plan to open an office in Louth later this year.

 

“The name change from Ard Dealgan to Halliday Mills is in honour of Arthur Halliday, who employed more than 1,000 people in his shoe factory in the 1960s, which was located on this site. It also reflects the location’s original purpose as a mill. We look forward to bringing this development back to life, to welcoming the new tenants next year, and to creating a new chapter in the history of this site.”

 

It is expected that Halliday Mills will be ready for occupancy in mid-2019.

 

ENDS

 

Media contact: Alan Sherry, Senior Executive Officer, Louth County Council, Tel:

042-9324148.

 

Notes to Editors: Background to Ard Dealgan:

  • Ard Dealgan was built as a 73-unit apartment complex by Coalport Building Company in 2006. A Fire Closure Notice was served on the property in September 2009 and it Development  Co  Ltd  in  2016,  after  Coalport  Building  Company  went  into receivership. Louth County Council had begun a Compulsory Purchase Order process to acquire the site and, conscious of this, Celtic Social Housing Development Co Ltd approached the Council to offer the development for social housing. Subsequently Túath Housing, an approved housing body, secured funding to re-develop the site in partnership with the new owners, Celtic Social Housing Development Co Ltd, which will develop 68 units of social housing. The council has also concluded the CPO on the remaining lands.
  • Arthur Halliday was an English businessman who relocated his shoe factory from the UK to Dundalk in 1928, on the site where Ard Dealgan now stands on Quay Street. He made the decision to manufacture Clarks shoes, under licence, at the Dundalk factory and eventually became managing director of Clarks Overseas Shoes Ltd. At the height of its success, in the 1960s, Mr Halliday’s operation in Dundalk employed more than 1,000 people. He was also involved in Dundalk Rugby Club, Dundalk Lawn Tennis Club and Dundalk Golf Club. He retired to the UK and died in the 1980s. He is still fondly remembered in Dundalk.
  • The Ard Dealgan project is funded by the Department of Housing, Planning and Local Government’s Rebuilding Ireland programme via the CALF (Capital Advance Leasing Facility) initiative.