Director Of Services with Kilkenny County Council, John McCormack, said that the Part V Planing Conditions relating to the Rosehill development only apply in a “perfect world”.
“All planning permissions contain conditions that in a perfect world would/should be complied with. Where they are not complied with then the Council will seek to achieve compliance through engagement with the developer through correspondence, meetings, agreements etc.
“If compliance cannot be achieved then we move into enforcement. This can take the form of Warning Letters, Enforcement Notices, legal proceedings or High Court Injunctions. In the case of Rose Hill we engaged with the developer over a long period in attempting to get a Part V Agreement,” Mr McCormack said in a written statement.
Houses in Rosehill were purchased for between €329,000 to in excess of €1 million. The original plans for the Rosehill estate included a linear walkway and green area along the banks of the river Breagagh, however this area is now the site for A4.3 million development of 27 social houses.
The developer who built the Rosehill, Castlelands Construction Company, wrote to residents on the June 3rd last year asking them to take over the maintenance of the estate as Castlelands could no longer afford the “labour resources required to keep the estate in the prestige condition to that it has remained to date.” Just six months later Kilkenny County Council signed a €4.3 million contract with Castlelands to build social housing on site in Rosehill. Castlelands are no longer building the houses, coincidentally another Mallow based builder, Hallmark Building Contractors has taken over the construction.
Rent to buy
A number of residents living in Rosehill had bought their houses on a rent to buy scheme. This scheme allowed them make a monthly payment to the developer that served as both a rental and mortgage payment.
Just a month before a liquidator was appointed to Castlelands construction these residents received a letter asking them to change their payments from an AIB account in Mallow, Co Cork to an Ulster bank account in Mallow.
Both accounts were in the name of the John and Elaine Barry, the owners of Castlelands. A spokesperson for the Barry’s said that the two accounts were for the same purpose. “These payments have always been paid to an account in the name of John and Elaine Barry. They have chosen to open a new account for same hence the request.”
A spokesperson for NAMA refused to confirm whether or not Mr Barry had any dealing with the agency, but said “As you are probably aware we are not in a position to confirm the acquisition of loans of any specific debtor. However if the loans of the debtor you refer to have been acquired, the suitable portfolio manager will be informed of the matter, and this will be dealt with as appropriate if required.”