‘Integral To The Social Significance Of The Building’


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The former offices of The Irish Catholic (left) and Paddy Wagon hostel and tour operator on Lower Gardiner Street, Dublin 1

Ciarán Darcy, in this morning’s Irish Times, reports:

A Dublin hostel’s application to replace a “mundane and ugly” Irish Catholic sign on the facade of the building with the word “Paddywagon” has been rejected by An Bord Pleanála.”

“The Paddywagon hostel operator and tour provider had applied to Dublin City Council last March for permission to change the lettering on a sign for the newspaper, but this was refused. The newspaper left the building in 2007.

“…a conservation officer said the sign may date back to the 1930s when Perspex acrylic was first used for box signage of its type, and the sign was “integral to the artistic, social and cultural significance of the building”.”


Bord Pleanála orders retention of ‘ugly’ Irish Catholic sign (Irish Times)

Pic: Google Maps

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26 thoughts on “‘Integral To The Social Significance Of The Building’

  1. ahjayzis

    I’m cool with legacy signage and the like, adds character. But that is one fugly looking old sign.

      1. scottser

        what, kept till it rots and falls off?
        you know, a wee drop of hydrorchloric acid solution would speed that process up ‘naturally’ by 50 years or so.

    1. Pretendgineer

      I’d imagine that’s what ABP are trying to prevent – more tacky Paddywagon signage – rather than specifically keeping the Irish Catholic sign.

  2. Joe835

    Have passed this sign for years and wouldn’t miss it; it doesn’t light up, it’s as dull as dishwater and utterly-forgettable. Interesting to contrast this decision with the one relating to the Pantibar sign; tasteful and in keeping with the structural shape of street signage on Capel Street yet the council has a problem with it nonetheless.

    Plus, how can a conservation officer’s finding that it “may date back to the 1930s” – surely if it’s worth keeping, a statement that’s essentially saying “ah it’s probably from, like, the 30’s or something” doesn’t inspire confidence in their case…..

  3. Conor

    Baffling decision – why on earth should a plastic 1950’s sign be preserved?! Fair enough the Why Go Bald neon has merits – but this?!

    Nonetheless from the article – ‘planning policies “ought to support a domestic export enterprise such as Paddywagon [as] it contributes significant taxes and fosters visitors to the country”.’
    Fair enough Paddywagon, if that’s the case you can tear down the Georgian terrace and build a modern 800 bed hostel. Can’t let planning and history get in the way of profits eh.

  4. Eamonn Clancy

    I just love that it gives a middle finger to modern Ireland. We all need to get one off from time to time, keeps us on our toes.

  5. poppy

    I was gobsmacked that it costs 30,000 euro a year to put up a homeless person in one of these hostels.An oap lives on 12,000 a year, feed themselves and pay their bills. Madness.

    1. Termagant

      OAPs generally don’t pay rent on account of having paid off their mortgages. Those that do, say those in a retirement home of some kind, pay much more than 30 grand a year.

      On topic: it’s an ugly sign. Let them take it down. But don’t let them put up another ugly sign, that would be highly counterproductive. Trading grim blue on white for lurid orange on green isn’t progress.

  6. kingo

    I think the sign should be kept. there are legacy issues. the paddwagon signage is tacky. they are a south African company. they also own busabout and haggis tours.

  7. Dave

    Where were these guys when the likes of Westmoreland Street was being blinged up like tacky christmas trees in hell by casinos, supermac’s and the rest?

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