Council asked to secure future of historic Limerick school building

The former Gaelscoil Sairséal on Bridge Street

LIMERICK City and County Council has been asked to secure the future of the former Gaelscoil Sairséal building on Bridge Street in the city.

At the December meeting of the Metropolitan District, Labour Party councillor Conor Sheehan proposed a motion calling on the council to explore the possibility of the Council acquiring the  building through one of its existing DAC companies, such as Limerick 2030.

“This is a significant historic building located in the heart of King’s Island that has been vacant for more than half a decade now and is deteriorating as each week passes,” Cllr Sheehan told the council executive.

“The building is under private ownership and is not owned by the Office of Public Works (OPW). I would hope that the owners will engage with the council in an effort to bring the building back into cultural, commercial or residential use.

“It was the site of the Colleen Bawn murder trial in 1810 and served for many years thereafter as a school. It is a sin to see such an impressive building lie vacant and derelict,” he added.

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Director of Economic Development Vincent Murray said the council had some engagement with the owners of the school over the last 12 months with a view to its future use.

“Now as it is vacant, the owner is keen to look at potential uses including office. I will engage with Limerick 2030 DAC and our housing department to examine if an initial feasibility study can be carried out,” Mr Murray said.

Cllr Sheehan said he was delighted to hear that the council had some engagement with the owners.

“This building requires a lot of work to restore it to its former glory but it should serve as a focal point on King’s Island. It could be repurposed as a civic or cultural space or even for residential use. It cannot be left to rot any longer,” he concluded.