'We did own Kelvin Grove, giving it to the HSE was a major mistake,' says councillor

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Darren Hassett

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Darren Hassett

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Kelvin Grove

A councillor has said that giving the Kelvin Grove site on the Athy Road to the HSE was a "major mistake" as it was confirmed that the building is on the Vacant Sites Register. 

Cllr Fergal Browne said the Council are "going nowhere" with the former psychiatric unit amidst calls for a women's refuge to be installed on the site.

He was speaking at this month's meeting of the full Council and added: "Could we CPO (Compulsory Purchase Order) the whole lands? We did own that ourselves. Giving it to the HSE was a major mistake in hindsight.

"Is it on the Vacant Sites Register?"

In response, Director of Services, Bernie O'Brien, said Kelvin Grove was on the Vacant Sites Register. 

Chief executive of the Council, Kathleen Holohan, said if the local authority sought to get the house back from the HSE they would consider it, but it would "have to be purchased".

Cllr John Cassin called for the local authority and the HSE to find some use for the site. 

He added: "It's wasting away, it's been empty for maybe ten years now. How much more dereliction can it take? Write to Tusla and tell them to provide funding for support workers for a women's refuge.

"That seems to be the only difficulty we have at this stage."