A “vital service” provided by a preschool and stage school is in jeopardy after planning permission was granted for the demolition of the building they’re housed in to make way for apartments in Cork city.
Compass homes have been granted conditional permission for the construction of 42 apartments comprising 23 one-bedroom apartments, 18 two-bedroom apartments, and one three-bedroom apartment within four blocks, ranging in height from two to four storeys on Brocklesby Street in Blackpool.
Permission was granted for the development in the building home to Múin preschool and Super Stars Stage School despite 13 objections.
Around 300 children attend the stage school. 22 children attend the preschool, two of which have additional needs. There are also 17 staff employed at the facility.
Marissa Buckley, manager of Múin preschool, described the scenario as “upsetting and stressful” in her objection to the plans.
In another submission, one parent said: “Blackpool is a place that needs to have a place where our children may be able to pass their time creatively since we don’t even have playgrounds or green spaces where they could play.” Another highlighted the “upwards of 40 families without childcare or access to early years education for their children”.
One said: “The uncertainty of the creche having to relocate/shut down is incredibly worrying.” Other submissions from local residents also highlighted traffic issues, overdevelopment of the area, and issues with the proposed development overlooking other properties and gardens.
Solidarity TD Mick Barry, along with Councillor Fiona Ryan, also submitted an objection to the proposal.
Speaking to The Echo following the decision, Deputy Barry said that it was a blow to both the teachers and the parents of the children who use the facilities at Brocklesby St.
“It should be noted, however, that the owners of the Múin preschool and the Superstars Stage School have a lease which is set to run for another four years and that they fully intend to see it out,” Deputy Barry said.
“I will study the ruling over the next few days and will consider the possibility of an appeal given the increased importance of facilities for young people in this post-Lockdown period.”