Council house fire in Wicklow Town estate

Number 26 Ocean View estate

Gardai in Wicklow Town are investigating a fire that occurred in the Ocean View estate late last night.

A fire was started outside Number 26 and windows  were smashed in the front of the property.

Boards stripped from the house were set alight.

Boards stripped from the house were set alight.

The terraced house is abandoned and there were no injuries, but neighbours were left shaken by the incident.

Three youths were arrested nearby for public order offences at approximately 1.30am.

An eyewitness told that the house has been boarded up for a number of years and has been a magnet for antisocial behaviour throughout that time.

“At one stage there were horses, dogs and geese living there. The council put metal shutters up and boarded up the door, but they’re taken down as quickly as they goes up.”

Councillor Pat Kavanagh has reported the incident to the town clerk and has called for a structural assessment of the building to ensure neighbouring properties are not in danger.

Cllr Kavanagh says that abandoned council houses should be bricked up to prevent damage to neighbouring family homes.

“I asked five or six weeks ago for these buildings to be bricked up as opposed to just being boarded up,” Cllr Kavanagh said. “This house has been boarded up a few times but they just keep breaking through.

“There are now a number of houses around the town that are uninhabitable because of damage done to them, but the town council doesn’t have the money to repair them. They’ll have to make an application to either the County Council or the Department for funding because it’s the neighbouring houses that are at risk if one of these abandoned properties is set alight.”

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