Still no resolution for traders in popular Glasnevin market

by Rose Barrett
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Despite correspondence from traders at the popular farmer’s market on Slaney Close in Glasnevin to the new owners, Blacklion Investments  Fund in recent months, there is no resolution or any sign of a favourable outcome, as yet.

 While Aontú candidate for Cabra-Glasnevin, Ian Noel Smyth, is urging owners and traders to come to an agreement re the future of the long-stranding market, traders remain in ‘no man’s land’ when it comes to any firm legal agreement.

 Peter Whelan of The Whole Hoggs free range pig farm in Slane, Co Meath has been trading at the Glasnevin local for 13+ years of the market’s 15-year existence.  Ryan’s Farm, Donegan’s Seafood, Loving Catering and McEvoy Flowers are but some of the weekly businesses who have traded there pretty much since the start of the setup on Slaney Close.

It was then owned by Hibernia Real Estate Investment Trust (REIT) and the market fees paid to Honest2Goodness who managed the busy weekly market. REIT then sold to Blacklion Investments Fund. In November 2023, traders received an email from Bríd Carter on behalf of Honest2Goodness. 

Honest2goodness market. Picture Facebook

“That email was the only correspondence we got,” said Peter, “And it is not considered a legal notice of termination. We responded to Ms Carter and complained as to the illegality of the notice. We have never received any notice of termination from the new owners, Blacklion, nor have we had any response to any of our legal communications.

“As traders over a long period, we have statutory rights; a new owner should issue a new temporary agreement and we have requested the same in writing. “

The market continues every Saturday at the same building located on Slaney Close, with 23-25 traders selling organic meats, baked goods, homecooked desserts, organic vegetables, and much more.  

“Easter Saturday next will be one of our busiest annual markets,” said Peter. “And we will be there as usual. Some stall holders are seeking alternatives, and organising a ‘click and collect’ pre-order service but we know from experience that customers like to see the end product they are buying and it’s all part of the charm of a farmer’s market. We are all trying to sort this, and we don’t want to panic.

“We totally appreciate there will be future development at this site in the future. We’ve met with senior planners at Dublin City Council, and until the next Local Area Development Plan is likely to come into effect in 2025, any specific plans are unlikely before then.”

A spokesperson for DCC stated that the early preparatory background stages of a local area plan for Dublin Industrial Estate and environs has commenced. The intention is that this plan (which will be subject to public consultation and elected members’ approval) will guide how the area will develop over time and the types of development that will be encouraged in the area.

“Initial public consultation was held during summer 2023 and commenced with the publication of an explanatory Issues Paper. Further public consultation and stakeholder engagement will be held as the plan is brought to draft stage towards the end of the year.”

Aontú candidate for Cabra-Glasnevin, Ian Noel Smyth, has visited the Saturday market many times, and appeals to the owners and traders to come to some agreement about the future of the long-stranding market.

Mr Smyth told the Dublin Gazette, “Traders are in active negotiation with the new owners, Blacklion Investment Fund who now own the  premises. We know there is a new local area plan being discussed by DCC which may result in many of the premises in the industrial estate being demolished and replaced by housing. This plan, if successful, will be adopted in 2025 and traders are seeking to be able to continue trading until such time as planning permission is sought for any new development.”

However, the recently formed Glasnevin Farmer’s Market Clg state they have never received any response or written correspondence from the current owners, neither a new contract nor a notice of termination. Blacklion Investments Fund declined to comment at this time.

Cllr Kieran Perry (Ind for Cabra-Glasnevin) stated it was futile to speculate on the future of the building and site at Slaney Close until the next local area development plan is finalised.

“Then the relative zonings for commercial, industrial and residential will determine the future outcome for sites in the area. Recently, a printer’s business was refused planning permission, as it was deemed premature to the completion of the local area plan. So, until that is agreed, there is no point in speculating on the site. Hopefully, the traders can continue until such time as the owners decide on future development at the site on Slaney Close.”

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