Local opposition halts plan for 30-bed guesthouse extension to Dalkey pub

A number of appeals have been lodged with An Bord Pleanála against the decision to grant planning permission for the development at the rear of Queen’s Pub on Castle Street, Dalkey

Plans to develop a 30-bedroom guesthouse extension to one of the best-known pubs in the south Dublin suburb of Dalkey have been put on hold following opposition from local residents.

A number of appeals including one by the Dalkey Community Council have been lodged with An Bord Pleanála against the decision of Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown County Council to grant planning permission for the development of guest accommodation at the rear of the Queen’s Pub on Castle Street, Dalkey, Co Dublin.

The proposed development over two, two-storey connected blocks is planned by East Coast Heritage after the landmark pub, which is a protected structure dating from 1745, was bought by hoteliers, Ray Byrne and Eoin Doyle for €3.5m in 2021.

The previous owner, former AIB chief executive and one-time Aer Lingus chairperson, Tom Mulcahy closed the pub in 2020 after 17 years operating the business due to his retirement after the Covid-19 pandemic forced it to close its doors.


In its appeal, the Dalkey Community Council said that while it welcomed the proposed development at the Queen’s as Dalkey currently lacked guest accommodation, it expressed concern about its “overbearing nature” on adjacent properties in White’s Villas.

The council’s chairperson, Susan McDonnell, said the proposal represented “an overdevelopment of the site” which would result in several nearby homes having reduced or no sunlight for much of the day.

Dr McDonnell said reducing the facility to a one-storey development would greatly reduce the impact on neighbours of the pub.

“Any new development should not result in the reduction in the standard of living of those residents already living in the vicinity,” said Dr McDonnell.

The Dalkey Community Council also expressed concern about inadequate provision for deliveries and waste collection.

It also questioned the developer’s justification for the exclusion of any guest parking facilities on the basis that a majority of patrons would be walking to the hotel.

Dr McDonnell said parking was already problematic in the centre of Dalkey with very limited on-street parking spaces and argued that the Queen’s should provide some parking facilities.

In a separate appeal, consultants acting for a group of residents of White’s Villas, claimed the development would have an adverse effect on adjoining properties due to “its location, proximity, bulk and scale.”

They said it would have “a profound and negative impact” on the residential amenity of the affected residents including in relation to noise which was already an issue due to the pub’s beer garden which had been the subject of an enforcement notice.

They also raised concern about the impact of the development on parking in the area with the planned removal of the pub’s existing car park to facilitate the constriction of guest accommodation.

Consultants for East Coast Heritage said the operators of the pub had significant experience in ownership and management of pubs, restaurants and accommodation services in Dublin and throughout the country.

They also pointed out that there are no hotel or guesthouses located in Dalkey in the “historic and bustling coastal town with a strong national and international reputation for cultural history, hospitality and tourist interest.”

After the purchase of the Queen’s, Mr Byrne - who also owns a number of businesses in the hospitality sector including the Eccles Hotel in Glengariff, Co Cork - said he hoped the development at the Queen’s would provide 30 full-time jobs.

A ruling on the appeals by An Bord Pleanála is due to be issued before the end of October 2023.