Dispute over legal rights to land earmarked for 200 houses in Galway

A local man claiming a legal interest in lands earmarked for 200 residential units in Oranmore, Co Galway, is trying to prevent its development, the Commercial Court has heard
Dispute over legal rights to land earmarked for 200 houses in Galway

A local man claiming a legal interest in lands earmarked for 200 residential units in Oranmore, Co Galway, is trying to prevent its development, the Commercial Court has heard.

John M Harrington, of Gurrane South, Oranmore, has brought High Court proceedings against a property company, Greenway Properties, and its associated companies Green Way Real Estate Holdings Ltd and Limbal Ltd, along with a company providing security on the lands, You're Secure Solutions Ltd.

The security firm has been employed by Corestone 16 Ltd, which bought the lands for €5.3 million last April.

The case is also against Green Way directors Peter Fitzgerald and John Carmody and against You're Secure directors James Barrett and Martin Barrett.

Legal right over land

Mr Harrington claims he has a legal right over the lands arising out of a contract between the lessor and lessee regardless of the new owner.

He also claims permission for building houses and zoning for the land should not be granted while he has a legal interest. He says the defendants acted in bad faith by proceeding to utilise the property for business purposes without seeking permission from him.

He has brought separate injunction proceedings against Corestone and two directors of that firm, Raymond Wheatley and Robert Adams. He claims his property and animals were unlawfully removed from the land.

The defendants deny all his claims.

Statement of claim

In an affidavit seeking entry of the Green Way proceedings to the fast-track Commercial Court, Green Way director Peter Fitzgerald said given that Corestone is the owner of the property, he was seeking to have that company joined as a defendant alongside Greenway and the others in these proceedings.

Corestone has indemnified the defendants in their defence to the proceedings.

He said while Mr Harrington has yet to deliver a statement of claim, it would appear his overall objective is to succeed in establishing a legal right and interest in the lands. It was apparent Mr Harrington was "in fact intent on preventing the development of the lands".

Mr Harrington did not appear in court on Monday when the application for entry to the commercial list was made.

Rossa Fanning SC, for the defendants, said his side were anxious to flush out this case as having "no merit whatsoever".

He asked for directions by the court including an order requiring Mr Harrington to serve all papers associated with the injunction proceedings and deal with the matter as soon as possible.

Mr Justice Denis McDonald admitted the case to the Commercial Court and gave the directions suggested by counsel. He said the case could come back later this month.

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