The Dun Laoghaire-Rathdown County Council have announced that operation of five tea rooms and cafes in DLR parks have been put up for tender.
The cafes listed are the Killiney Hill Tea Rooms, Cabinteely Tea Rooms, Boland’s Cafe, Wicklow Way Cafe and Tranquil Tea Rooms.
The Killiney Hill Tea Rooms have been open since 2012 after lying idle for many years.
News of the request for the tender has angered some locals in the Killiney area who say it is unfair the tenants have to now go through the process after years of managing the successful cafe without complaint.
“It was built up by Eamon Keogh, he put so much hard work into getting this little business up and running, it has taken him a few years,” says local Bernadette Hayes.
“Normally when the lease from DLRCC is up he just signs and continues with business. This year DLRCC have decided to put it up for tender (…) shame on them.”
A spokesperson from the Dun Laoghaire Rathdown County Council said that the previous tender was in 2016 and was for a period of three years. This recently issued request for tender is in compliance with public procurement policy, they say.
When asked whether or not he would submit a bid, Eamon Keogh says he “hasn’t decided yet.”
“I don’t have anything further to say about it. It’s going up for tender and that’s just a fact.”
“If he puts in a tender, he will probably get it again as no doubt he will meet the criteria. And as the incumbent he’s in a good position etc,” says Tracey Thomas.
“Failing that if he doesn’t get it everyone could just picket outside and not go in, the council would definitely have to reconsider,” she adds.
“He and the cafe are treasures, so kind and welcoming to children, dogs, and fragile older customers,” says Maev Kennedy on Facebook.
“The council should be celebrating and promoting it, not undermining it.”
The contract at the Killiney Hill Tea Rooms expires on May 31 with the deadline for tender submissions closing on April 29.