Finglas locals don’t duck out of call to save The Drake Inn

by Rachel Darcy

Locals in Finglas are calling for The Drake Inn in the village to be saved from being turned into apartments, following the lodging of a planning application.

The former pub has been left derelict in the centre of Finglas Village for some time, but last week a planning application from Swiss-based Mulsh Sarl appeared outside the building seeking permission.

The application asks for permission from Dublin City Council (DCC) to construct five floors of apartments, 37 in total, above a ground floor retail unit and a gastropub.

Deputy Dessie Ellis (SF) posted news of the application to his Facebook page, with locals objecting to the concept of a mid-level building in the centre of the northside village.

“How do you go about objecting to this ridiculous idea? Apartments in the middle of the village?” wrote Ashley Harold.

David Greene said: “I don’t have a problem with apartments being built in the village, but demolishing one of the more historical buildings to do so is not the answer. Once you destroy your history, it’s gone forever.”

In response to the news of the planning application’s submission, a local Facebook group created a poll to garner the opinions of locals on whether The Drake Inn should be saved, or if it should be demolished to make room for the proposed apartments.

More than 230 people voted that the historic building should be saved, saying it’s a “disgrace” that it was allowed to fall into disrepair.

In February, Councillor Keith Connolly (FF) previously started a petition calling for DCC to take ownership of the building under a compulsory purchase order.

At the time, Patricia Kennedy wrote: “The Drake building is way beyond saving and has become an eyesore, but replacing it with apartments is not what I’d like to see.

“The investor is only going to build whatever makes him money. We should remember that Finglas was bypassed when things were good, we were simply left behind.”

Located at the junction of Main Street and Jamestown Road, The Drake Inn has been vacant since 2009. It was once a popular northside venue, and hosted some of the biggest stars of the Cabaret era.

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