Its outrageous with the housing crisis in this country and this city that these beautiful blocks of flats are to be destroyed, demolished, disappeared forever. The rejuvenation process and the monies for it have not been decided upon. There are hundreds of people homeless on our streets, thousands on the waiting lists.
I’ve been inside this unique block and in my opinion it is well worth maintaining. Beautiful light, curved walls (no corners), excellent sized rooms, truly a wonderful piece of architecture and so well built.
My fathers family came from Charlemont Street long ago and as a child I played around up here and always admired the difference of Ffrench Mullan flats. The difference creates curiosity, fills the mind and the spirit and encourages one to explore.
This site will be rendered to a speculator who will build a tiny amount of social housing and a substantial amount of commercial enterprise and private apartments. The residents of Charlemont Street, Tom Kelley flat complex have been left in a deplorable situation by Dublin City Council, the Irish Government and builder speculators. The same is the case for the residents of O Devaney Gardens, Dorset Street, Dolphins Barn, Fatima Mansions to name but a few. Who knows when this community will enter into their new homes on site because there is certainly another 5-10 years of development of this particular city centre location.
Today there is a small gathering of residents and former residents of Charlemont and Tom Kelley flats and Ffrench Mullan house along with public representatives to bid farewell to these blocks prior to their demolition. For me, it will be one of great sadness and disappointment because I see this as a further erosion and dispossession of city communities and their culture.