O’Driscoll must pay €2,000 to restore water

Irish rugby captain Brian O’Driscoll and several other Wexford holiday-home owners should have water restored to their properties once they have paid €2,000 each to a management company they are in dispute with, a judge has ruled.

Mr O’Driscoll is among the owners of 32 houses which are part of the Seafield Demesne Hotel and Golf development in Ballymoney, where there has been a dispute with Seafield Demesne Management Ltd over the amount of the annual service charge.

Only those used as holiday homes, and not those permanently occupied, had their water cut off last March, the High Court heard.

There are 60 houses in total in the development.

Yesterday, Mr Justice Kevin Feeney granted the owners of 32 of the houses an injunction ordering Seafield Demesne Management not to interfere with the water and sewage services to the houses.

He ordered the company to restore the water supply within seven days to those which were cut off on payment of €2,000 each to the company.

This figure, totalling €64,000, was what the owners had offered to pay the company at the beginning of the injunction hearing pending the outcome of the full legal proceedings.

The court heard about €207,000 had been paid under protest by the owners into their own solicitors covering four years of charges up to 2011, which was the minimum the management firm claimed was owed by them.

The judge said the €64,000 should come out of this €207,000 and the remaining €143,000 should then be lodged in a joint account between solicitors for both parties pending resolution of the dispute.

The court heard separate proceedings have been brought in Wexford Circuit Court against the owners over the alleged arrears and the owners had counter-claimed in the same court against Seafield Demesne Management.

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