The wife of one of Ireland’s richest men, JP McManus, has been stopped in her tracks, for now, from further extending a family home on a ‘millionaires’ row’ in Dublin 4.

Noreen McManus had lodged plans in July with Dublin City Council to demolish an 80sq metre bungalow and replace it with a 200sq m two-storey dwelling to the rear of the main property at 22 Ailesbury Rd.

The McManuses had acquired developer Bernard McNamara’s former home, at No 22, for a cut-price €10m in 2011.

They also bought 14a and 16a, two mews buildings, to the rear of the property for a combined €2.7m in 2012.

The former McNamara home famously contains a dance floor that folds away to become a swimming pool at the touch of a button. It also has a home cinema and a games’ room.

Ms McManus is now seeking planning permission to create a single complex linking all three properties.

However, the plan has provoked strong opposition from neighbours, including author and actor Claudia Carroll.

In an objection lodged by the former Fair City star, Ms Carroll advised Dublin City Council her mews property “will be totally overlooked by this property, violating privacy and overshadowing my garden”.

She claimed: “It represents a gross interference with the amenities of long-established neighbours on Merrion Rd.”

Her parents, Dr Claude and Anne Carroll, lodged a separate objection.

And consultant psychiatrist Dr Michael Mulcahy told the city council the development “represents a gross overdevelopment of a suburban site. It will interfere with the amenities of long-established neighbours. It should be refused.”

Joseph McGettigan from Merrion Rd, meanwhile, had stated: “I wish to object to further development on this garden site which is at the bottom of my garden.

“The gross building already constructed is an invasion of the privacy not only to my house but also my neighbours and there is excessive construction already on what was a small garden.

“I have discussed this new application with my neighbours and they are totally opposed to any further development on the garden site at 14/16 Ailesbury Rd.”

Mr McGettigan said the piecemeal construction “practically takes up the entire garden and would be an eyesore to all the residents who will no option but to see this incongruous large development at the end of their gardens”.

In response, the council has placed the plan on hold. In seeking additional information on the plan, the local authority said: “It is noted that no details are set out indicating the basis for this planning application or how the various works to the proposed building are intended to form part of the overall development and remain as ancillary accommodation to No 22 Ailesbury Rd.”

As a result, the council has requested Ms McManus “to address these issues and indicate who the proposed building is intended to serve”.

Ms McManus has also been requested to clarify whether or not the intention is to construct a new single unit or two separate units. The council stated: “If so, revised drawings shall be submitted to reflect compliance with the newspaper and site notice.”

The council is seeking full written information and supporting drawings of the right-of-way arrangements for the laneway and the provision of car parking for the residents of the proposed development.


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