ONE of the city’s longest-running sagas – the derelict remains of the former Ryan’s pub in Ballybeg – has finally come to an end, the Waterford News & Star can exclusively reveal.
Back in March 2011, the former pub was gutted by a blaze and in the eight years that followed, it had a host of different owners, none of whom seemed either able, or willing to do something with it. Thankfully for the area, the most recent owners – a venture capitalist firm from the UK – have finally been forced into submission and surrendered the site to a local builder’s company.
it is understood that the builders had been working for the venture capitalist firm in the UK and managed to convince them to release the much sought after land in Ballybeg. A representative of the company, Raymond Wash told the Waterford News & Star that they had their eye on the pub for a while.
“This was one of those situations where we were in the right place at the right time,” Raymond said. “We had been talking to a local councillor in Waterford – Jason Murphy – who had been telling us about the pub and how it was the thorn in the side for both the residents of Ballybeg and also the City Council.”
Raymond said that they have swift and immediate plans for the site.
“The licence for the pub is long gone, meaning that it can never be a pub again,” he said. “Our plan is to build apartments – 2 and 3 bedroom – and then sell them on to the Council so that they can be used to help with the housing problem in the city at the moment. We have our plans ready to go, and a meeting scheduled with the Planning Department of the Council this week, so hopefully everything will happen quite fast from here on in.”
Fianna Fail Councillor Jason Murphy said that it was a “relief that the eyesore was finally going to go”.
“The former Ryan’s pub has been a nightmare for the residents of Ballybeg for far too long and now after a number of false starts that nightmare is now finally coming to an end,” Cllr Murphy said. “Contracts have been signed and the development has now entered into the planning process. The developer is extremely anxious to deliver a social housing solution in conjunction with the council that would see the site totally rejuvenated. From my own point of view, the timing is brilliant because the Leisure Village which has been proposed for the area, is in the final stages of pre-planning with a comprehensive traffic management assessment about to be completed.”