New 1,500 seat venue could be on the way to Gorey

By Fintan Lambe

Published 27/02/2016 | 20:40

Senator Michael D'Arcy and entrepreneur Harry Crosbie at Gorey's Market House last week
Senator Michael D'Arcy and entrepreneur Harry Crosbie at Gorey's Market House last week

THE dream of turning lands at the rear of Gorey's Market House into a multi-purpose venue, took one step closer last week with the confirmation that An Bord Pleanála has granted the Compulsory Purchase Order of lands at the back of the building.

Welcoming the news, Senator Michael D'Arcy said that Wexford County Council will complete the acquisition as speedily as possible. 'Once secured the lands are likely to be cleared and consolidated as one site with secure boundaries,' he said.

The Council will now seek of expressions of interest in developing the site in partnership with the Council. Entrepreneur Harry Crosbie, who is behind many of Dublin's large entertainment venues, has suggested a multi-purpose venue for the site behind the historic building to be called 'Vicar Street South', where acts playing in Vicar Street in Dublin could be booked to play a date in Gorey too. Mr Crosbie met Senator D'Arcy in Gorey last week, and confirmed that his interest is 'as strong as ever to develop a major venue here.'

'If we are chosen by Wexford County Council, we will build a 1,500 capacity multi-purpose venue at the Market House, Gorey, in collaboration with Wexford County Council,' he said. 'My plan is it will be based on the successful format of Vicar Street Dublin. All seating will be removable so that the venue can host mini car, boat and machinery shows, as well as trade and produce markets of every kind.'

He said the venue will be project managed by himself and Aiken Promotions which will run the diary. 'Its target audience will be the entire South East,' he said. 'It will initially operate for the summer and Christmas seasons and present a full range of shows and attractions from international touring programmes. It will have full restaurant and bar facilities serving the best of local produce.'

Senator D'Arcy said that it is a great idea from people within the entertainment industry who have a proven track record in providing entertainment and commercial venues of the highest standard internationally. 'This project can put Gorey back on the map as a national entertainment hub,' he said. 'It is expected 50 jobs will be created. I will do everything in my power to ensure this vision becomes a reality.'

Chairperson of Gorey Municipal District Committee Malcolm Byrne said that the Council has worked on the project for years. 'Expressions of interest are now invited from interested parties in how we will develop the project,' he said, thanking Council Chief Executive, Tom Enright and Director of Services, Tony Larkin for their work and sharing in this vision.

'We shouldn't get too excited just yet but this is another step on achieving a world class venue that will add to Co. Wexford's reputation as a leader in music and the arts,' he added. 'We should continue to be ambitious, however.'

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