Wicklow Sinn Féin Councillor John Brady has welcomed the approval by
the Department of the Environment for Bray Town Council to use
Internal Capital Receipts monies to carry out the long awaited fire
safety works in the fire prone Oldcourt housing estate in Bray.
Cllr Brady who has spearheaded the campaign for the fire safety works
to be carried out said "I received confirmation only this week that
the Department of the Environment has given Bray Town Council the go
ahead for the fire safety works in the Oldcourt Estate. The residents
and i have been campaigning now for many years to have the the serious
fire safety issues that exist in the houses addressed. I am glad to
say this is the beginning of the end for this campaign and both the
residents and myself have been vindicated in our views about the
safety of the houses and most importantly the work will shortly
commence on making the houses safer".
Cllr Brady went onto say "Now that the funding has been secured it is
expected that a tender will be issued to the Framework Panel of
Contractors. A report on the tendering process is expected by the end
of September and i would be hopeful that work within the estate should
being late this year"
Brady continued "This news is very welcome and its been a long
coming. Problems within the estate initially arose after the estate
underwent a major refurbishment scheme in the 1980's, it has seen
numerous fires and fatalities since the work was carried out. Seven
people have lost their lives to fires in the Oldcourt Estate in the
last two decades. In 2005 i succeeded in having an independent fire
safety audit carried out. The findings of the audit which were
published in 2007 returned a damning verdict on the houses and
outlined a substantial number of things that needed to be done in the
houses to make them safer. This report has formed the basis for the
successful application to the Department and the identified issues
along with energy efficiency works will be addressed in the scheme.
Once complete the council housing stock in Oldcourt will meet all the
current housing regulations and will have a higher energy rating than
most modern homes"
Cllr Brady concluded "It is estimated the scheme will cost several
million euro and this will be drawn down from the councils own
internal capital receipts. I am however pressing to have the 20% of
homes that are privately owned included in the scheme if the owners
request. These residents bought their homes from the council in good
faith only to find out subsequently that there was serious structural
issue within them, i believe the council has a responsibly to these
residents too that should be honoured. I hope that the work now
proceeds as quickly as possible to ensure the estate is made safe and
brought up to the highest standards".