Free Tomorrow?


34, Frederick Street North, Dublin 1


At 34, Frederick Street North, Dublin 1.

At 1pm.

Dublin Central Housing Action writes:

Saturday will be Day 4 of resisting the injunction at 34 Frederick St North!

Mothers and students, workers and teachers, care leavers, couch surfers and renters have taken the brave step together to face down an injunction. We Need Your Support!

Groups have been occupying buildings now for 23 days, with three goals, 1) to spark off the housing movement through radical action, 2) to build community, and 3) to expose who is causing the housing crisis. We have stood our ground, but now is the time for the movement to grow.

In Dublin we are calling on groups to rally in support on Saturday the 1st, for groups to step forward to join us and break the injunction. If they can’t take this step, defend us from the outside and write statements of support.

Outside Dublin we are calling on people to do solidarity actions and to join us on the 8th of September in Dublin for the relaunch of the Irish Housing Network.

If groups want to take radical direct action, including occupations, get in touch and lets spread this fight across the island!

Rally For Frederick Street (Facebook)

Yesterday: Vacant Stand-Off


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6 thoughts on “Free Tomorrow?

    1. Declan

      Don’t be a troll. They’ve highlighted an important point.

      Their only failing is that they want “radical” action. Which is essentially guards et all pulling them out and that’s essentially them looking for a fight for a fights sake and that’s not cool!!!!

    2. SOQ

      Before I even opened this thread I knew the first 1-2 comments were going to be negative and /or bitchy. Not @ you Deco.

      This is the biggest single issue of our times. I do not agree that the focus should be on social housing but on those who want to work hard, save, and then buy a home. Nothing to criticise there except they can’t because rent is nuts and anyone who manages to take on such debt will spend the next 30 years praying they don’t get sick, unemployed, or divorced.

      And then we have the hoarders. Good central buildings lying idle. Mammy is in a home and she is hanging around a bit longer than we expected (go Mammy) or we haven’t yet got around to turning it into a boutique hotel or our company is using it as a tax break or whatever self serving statements Dublin Central Housing Action forces out of them.

      Buildings should not be left to rot while people are dying on the streets. The issue is defiantly not tech workers, in fact I expect there is quite a few among your ranks. Fair play to you lads, you are the true spirit of this republic.

      1. Ronan

        March for something deliverable. Like a vacant site tax.

        Give us homes now and disobeying a court order is just pointless fight picking with no real end game. What did Apollo house achieve? A few bits of accommodation in old commercial premises?

        1. scottser

          Youve got to kick against the pricks. Their reaction tells you more about them and how to counter them than doing something acceptable and predictable. My own belief is that they should occupy properties en masse rather than one at a time, but im not part of that movement. Fair balls to them i say, it’s unconscionable leaving property derelict in a housing shortage.

  1. SOQ

    From the Dublin Central Housing Action Facebook page so I assume ok to post here.

    On Thursday we introduced you to Patricia Ní Greil aka Orla McGreal, the legal owner of 34 North Frederick Street. On Friday Colm McGreal & Barbara Tracey/McGreal paid us a visit in person — so we think it’s time you got to know Mammy & Daddy a little better. After all, Orla hardly managed to buy her own four-storey period property in Dublin City Centre at the tender age of 31. Sure she’s been off volunteering in Romania, hardly saving for a deposit!

    As we’ve already heard, Colm McGreal is an insurance intermediary & advisor by trade, and Barbara Tracey a school teacher. They also have a sideline in property, because life’s really dull without a bit of property speculation on the weekends.

    Colm & Barbara’s first company was McGreal Insurances Ltd. It ran from 1987-2003, and was registered to 7 Sydenham Rd, in Ballsbridge, D4 — this is believed to be the family home.

    Throughout the late 1980s and into the ’90s, they had an eye for spacious period properties around Dublin city. They acquired various properties in Lower Leeson St, Fitzwilliam Place and Lower Mount Street, and rented them out presumably as office space.

    Then came the early ’00s, when the McGreals partied as much as anyone else.

    Starting in 2001, they amassed a portfolio of at least 19 apartments in new developments across the country – this in addition to the period properties they already had in south inner city Dublin. In Dublin 7, Wellington Quay, Ballymun, and Rialto; Newtownforbes in Co. Longford; Duleek, Co. Meath; Carrick-On-Shannon, Co. Leitrim; and in Waterford City.

    How did they manage all this, alongside their day-jobs?
    Their insurance firm was no more, having closed in 2003. Though Colm was presumably still doing freelance insurance work – he’s worked for several high-profile companies like Aviva Life & Pensions, Irish Life Health DAC, Scottish Provident, & Zurich Life Assurance to name a few.

    Always enterprising, the McGreals managed their property portfolio through two new companies. In 2002, Colm & Barbara opened Gracanica Ltd. and Brorup Ltd. (catchy!) — with the supposed purpose of “Buying & Selling of Own Real Estate”,these traded as Achill Property Holdings and Achill Management Services. Gracanica Ltd. was the only shareholder of Brorup Ltd., so Brorup Ltd. handled the day-to-day running of properties, while Gracanica Ltd. handled the ownership side of things. Several of these properties were re-mortgaged at various stages, presumably to purchase more, or to keep the others afloat. Standard fare for people with over 20 properties to their name – treat them like the investments they are.

    In 2013 the McGreals ran into a spot of bother – Gracanica Ltd. went into Receivership. This was linked to mortgages taken out on several of their properties that were going unpaid.

    By order of the Receiver, they were sold on over the next few years. In Nov 2017, Gracanica Ltd. was declared solvent again. A happy ending after all!

    Then in 2016, our beloved 34 North Frederick St. came on the market.
    This building was already in Receivership, having belonged to the Duffys of Duffy Mangan Butler, an auctioneer firm who were dragged over the coals during the Flood Tribunal – suffice to say, they were hit badly during the Recession and 34 North Frederick St was just one of their casualties.

    Oddly, the McGreals bought 34 North Frederick Street despite the fact that their main property-owning company (Gracanica Ltd.) was in Receivership at the time, and they were being forced to sell on several of their other properties. The McGreals do love a good Georgian property, so having been forced to sell some on the leafy south-side, they somehow managed to get approval to buy another – admittedly in the less salubrious neighbourhood of Dublin 1.

    The question is, how did they get approval for a mortgage while they were in Receivership for not meeting repayments on another one.

    Of course, neither Colm McGreal nor Barbara Tracey/McGreal chanced to put their name on the deeds of this latest acquisition. They’re too smart for that. Instead, they landed their daughter Orla with it.

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