Tag Archives: National Maternity Hospital

From top:  St Vincent’s Hospital; Dr Peter Boylan (left) Archbishop Eamon Martin

This morning.

Dr Peter Boylan writes:

[Irish Times Religious Affairs correspondent] Patsy McGarry reports that an unnamed canon lawyer believes that “there is nothing in the letter of grant” from Rome which could be seen as “a stipulation that church canon law, doctrine or teaching must be observed by St Vincent’s Holdings, or the proposed NMH”.

This opinion is baffling.

I too have seen the letter of grant of March 16th, signed by senior Vatican official Sr Carmen Ros Nortes. She states that the Vatican grants the transfer request by the Sisters of Charity “in conformity with the petition” and that, “The provisions relating to the validity and lawfulness of alienations, found in Canons 638-639 and Canons 1292-1294 of the Code of Canon Law and in Proper Law, are to be observed.”

This last sentence is emphasised in bold type in the communication.

Thus, everything the Sisters of Charity now do in respect of transferring their 100 per cent shareholding in St Vincent’s Healthcare Group to St Vincent’s Holdings CLG must observe canon law, specifically the canons cited and must be in conformity with the reasons they gave the Vatican for wanting to undertake the transfer.

In this respect, Canon 1293 is particularly relevant. Canon 1293.1.1. requires that the Sisters of Charity must have “a just cause, such as urgent necessity, evident advantage, piety, charity, or some other grave pastoral reason” to make the transfer.

Canon 1293.2. requires that “other precautions prescribed by legitimate authority are also to be observed to avoid harm to the Church”.

As a result of the Vatican stipulations, the problem now facing the Sisters of Charity is how to effect a transfer that brings 186 years of Catholic healthcare ministry to an end, the result of which will facilitate a hospital which will perform abortions and other procedures absolutely forbidden by Catholic teaching?

Where is the “just cause” and what is the potential for such approval to cause “harm to the church” in the eyes of the faithful?

No wonder many Irish Catholics are alarmed and confused.

In comments published in the Sunday Times over the weekend, Archbishop Eamon Martin stated that “the carrying out of abortions or morally illicit medical procedures at the NMH would be repugnant” to Catholic teaching and “regardless of the eventual outcome of the proposed transfer, the church will remain clear in its public statements that there is no place in a maternity hospital for abortion”.

How does Archbishop Martin reconcile Catholic teaching on abortion with his support for the Sisters’ request to the Vatican which will clear the way for St Vincent’s Holdings CLG to own a hospital in which abortion, IVF, elective sterilisation and other procedures will constitute part of the daily routine?

What does the Primate of All Ireland consider to be the “just cause” for this transfer? Is he concerned about harm to the church?

The constitution of St Vincent’s Holdings CLG, which will own the new NMH, will surely be subject to the provisions of the canon laws outlined in the letter of grant.

This is not a theoretical discussion. The taxpayers of Ireland who will fund the new NMH, and the women of Ireland who will attend it, deserve clarity.

None of the information currently in the public domain allays well-founded fears about the potential for Catholic ethos to influence clinical practice in the new NMH.

And all this before full consideration as to why even the Irish Government would hand ownership of a €500 million maternity hospital of key national importance to a private charity. – Yours, etc,

Dr Peter Boylan
Life Governor and former Master, National Maternity Hospital,
Dublin 6.

National Maternity Hospital and canon law (Irish Times Letters)

Last week: ‘The Makings Of A Very Irish Scandal’


From top: Michael Kelly (left), editor of The Irish Catholic, and Minister for Health Simon Harris; The proposed new National Maternity Hospital; a tweet apparently from the account of Minister Harris this morning which has since been deleted; Response from Social Democrats co-leader Róisín Shortall

This morning.

Further to Social Democrats co-leader Róisín Shortall’s call on the Government to ‘come clean’ on the position between the Vatican and the State on the new National Maternity hospital, and to halt further spending until ownership is resolved…

An exclusive report in The Irish Catholic states that the Vatican is being lobbied to block the Religious Sisters of Charity from transferring land to the State to facilitate the building of the new National Maternity Hospital.

Michael Kelly reports that Rome-based theologian Fr Kevin O’Reilly has said that the Holy See has an obligation to block the plans.

Mr Kelly reports:

[Fr Kelly said:] “Thanks to the 36th Amendment of the Constitution, Ireland – to its great shame – now boasts an extremely liberal abortion regime.

“It is in this context that the Religious Sisters of Charity issued their recent statement concerning the ‘imminent’ legal transfer of their shares in St Vincent’s Healthcare Group”.

However, Fr O’Reilly said that “in the wake of any future abortions, no one involved in executing the transfer to date can reasonably turn around and say that this eventuality was unforeseen.

“It is bewildering that those who have facilitated the process to date clearly do not possess any degree of moral foresight.

“One can only hope that the competent officials in the Vatican will act in accord with the Church’s constant teaching and the dictates of right reason by forbidding this unconscionable act,” he said.

Mr Kelly spoke to Bryan Dobson on RTÉ’s Morning Ireland about his article and how the transfer not only needs Vatican approval, it also needs the permission of the Archbishop of Dublin – which has been given by Diarmuid Martin.

However, he said “this isn’t over by a long shot” and later noted that because Diarmuid Martin is due to retire next April, his successor could take a different view to Archbishop Martin.

During the interview, the Health Minister Simon Harris allegedly tweeted Morning Ireland saying “Eh……no nun will be on the board”.

This tweet has since been deleted.


From the interview:

Michael Kelly: “They call it, in Canon Law, the alienation of the property. And that stands whether the land is sold or as in this case it’s being given as a free transfer. The nuns, because it’s over the value of €3.5million, they need permission of ecclesiastical authorities so in the first instance, you’re absolutely correct, that the Archbishop of Dublin.

“And he’s already given his permission and he’s actually recommended to the Vatican that they give approval as well. Now it’s in Rome at the moment and Rome is coming under increased pressure I suppose, lobbying in fact going on, to try to get them to block this proposal.

“Precisely because the new National Maternity Hospital, as [Health Minister] Simon Harris has pointed out will facilitate every procedure that is legal in the State.

“Now since the amendment to the Constitution that obviously now means abortions, terminations of pregnancies, which the Catholic church has pretty clear and consistent opposition to so that’s really where the lobbying is coming from, to try to get the Vatican, the Roman Curia to block this proposal.

“The sisters say it’s imminent, I understand from Rome that they’re not in any hurry to do anything about it. But part of the confusion I suppose is that a lot of the discussions around this has been saying that Vatican permission is not necessary. The law is very clear on it – Canon Law does require Vatican permission. This is church-owned property, it’s not something that the sisters can grant to anyone without the approval of their superiors.”

Dobson: “So where’s this lobbying coming from, who’s involved? Who’s saying that this transfer should be blocked?”

Kelly: “So some of the lobbying that’s going on is coming from moral theologians in Rome for example. One of the people we’re quoting in the newspaper this week is a Professor Kevin O’Reilly, he’s an Irish man but he’s a professor at the Angelicum University in Rome and he’s arguing that this shouldn’t take place, precisely because it would mean that this land would be transferred. He’s saying that that would be directly facilitating abortions to take place.

“He’s basically saying if the State wants to abortions to take place at a new National Maternity Hospital, they should find their own site. I understand that also quite a number of people here, particularly people who’ve been involved on the pro-life side of these debates have been writing to the Vatican ambassador in Dublin, the Papal Nuncio, asking him to make representations to Rome on the issue as well.

“So it’s not over by a long shot.”

Dobson: “Opponents of the move, or at least the new structure that would be in place, for example, Peter Boylan, former Master of the National Maternity Hospital, say that significant problems arise in relation to this new entity would be managed, would be governed, would be put together.

“The Religious Sisters of Charity will still have a presence, he argues, a controlling role in the new board. How will that square with how the Vatican would see this arrangement.”

Kelly: “You see, Simon Harris is trying to give the impression here that this is all going to be very straight, that you known you can have the Religious Sisters of Charity on the board and that will mean that everything that takes place there will comply with current legislation. The difficulty that arises there is, you know, the issue of abortion, is a very, very grave one for the Catholic Church. The Vatican is certainly not going to stand over a situation whereby the sisters are involved in a hospital where abortions are taking place.

“This doesn’t happen in any Catholic hospital in any part of the world.

“So I think there’s a vagueness there, around the structures that probably needs to be clarified but certainly the Vatican will not permit a situation whereby a Catholic institution, even if it’s only Catholic in name, is involved in the provision of the termination of pregnancy.”

Dobson: “We had a statement from Minister Simon Harris. He said that in advance of building works commencing, all outstanding issues would need to be resolved and he’d like to see progress on these as quickly as possible but he could be waiting.”

Kelly: “I think he very well will be waiting because I think the Vatican are not going to do anything in a hurry. Remember the Archbishop of Dublin is due to retire in April with his retirement that creates a whole new page and a successor could think something very, very differently from Diarmaid Martin.”

Listen back in full here.

Vatican urged to block nuns’ hospital transfer (Michael Kelly, The Irish Catholic)

Yesterday: Waiting For The Vatican

Tweet pic: Ronan Kennedy

From top: The proposed development of the new National Maternity Hospital at St Vincent’s University Hospital Campus; Social Democrats TD Róisín Shortall and Fine Gael TD Heather Humphreys in the Dáil yesterday

Yesterday afternoon.

Róisín Shortall TD, Social Democrats co-leader, called on the Government to ‘come clean’ on the position between the Vatican and the State on the New National Maternity hospital, and to halt further spending until ownership is resolved. She said:

“Despite commitments given by Minister Harris in the Dáil a year ago, we’re still waiting to see if the State will own the new hospital, despite being continuously promised that it was to be sorted out and legally secure months ago”, she said.

“It is reckless of the Government to spend €43m on the first phase of the National Maternity Hospital before any resolution of the ownership of the new hospital.

“The new National Maternity Hospital must be fully in public ownership and must operate with a non-denominational ethos. However, this is now dependent on approval from the Vatican.

“It is a shameful position for a Republic to be in that our badly-needed new National Maternity Hospital is waiting for Vatican permission before we can proceed.

It is not clear when or if the Vatican will give their approval for the disposal of the site.

This Government must stop putting further public monies at risk until ownership and ethos is legally secure. As it stands, the delivery date of 2024 is very unlikely to be met, but without clarity on legal ownership, it is a huge risk to continue to pour money into something that is still in private hands.”


Earlier yesterday, during Leaders’ Questions, Ms Shortall had the following exchange with Fine Gael TD Heather Humphreys…

Róisín Shortall: “It is over seven years since the move of the National Maternity Hospital, Holles Street, to St. Vincent’s was first announced. While we know that the care in Holles Street is excellent, the building is antiquated and the conditions are unacceptable for patients and staff. Progress on the new hospital has been painfully slow, though.

“It is over two years since a row broke out between Holles Street and St. Vincent’s about governance structures and the Minister for Health appointed Mr. Kieran Mulvey to hammer out an agreement between them.

In the meantime, the public was alerted to the fact that a secret deal had been brokered between the two hospitals without any reference whatsoever to the public interest.

“It amounted to the gifting of an asset with an estimated value of approximately €350 million to private religious interests and the new hospital’s ethos being dictated by those interests.

“Is it not the case that the Minister for Health misjudged the situation as being only a tiff between two hospitals? Did he not misjudge the extent of public concern that the new maternity hospital must be fully publicly owned and operated and operate with a non-denominational ethos?

“The Minister was forced to halt the deal and respond to public concern. The Religious Sisters of Charity subsequently announced their intention to withdraw from St. Vincent’s and divest themselves of Elm Park.

“They gave undertakings that the new maternity hospital would be fully public and independent. Despite assurances from St. Vincent’s, the Religious Sisters of Charity and the Minister, however, that has not happened yet.

“Last December, the Minister for Health announced that agreement had been reached with St. Vincent’s and the new maternity hospital would be fully publicly owned. He also said that the legal documents giving effect to this would be available early in the new year, but they have not materialised as yet.

The Government, however, proceeded to allocate €43 million of public money to phase one of the hospital.

“Does the Minister, Deputy Humphreys, accept that the Government was reckless in doing that before it had title to the site concerned? Will she give an undertaking that no further public money will be allocated to the project and, therefore, put at risk of being lost to the public purse?”

Heather Humphreys: “I thank the Deputy for raising this matter. The project is an important one and the Government is anxious that it proceed. The Government is fully committed to the National Maternity Hospital, which involves the development of a new maternity hospital on the campus of St. Vincent’s University Hospital at Elm Park.

“The governance arrangements for the new hospital will be based on the provisions of the Mulvey agreement, which was an agreement finalised in late 2016 between the National Maternity Hospital and the St. Vincent’s Healthcare Group, SVHG, following extensive mediation.

“The terms of the Mulvey agreement provide for the establishment of a new company that will have clinical, operational, financial and budgetary independence in the provision of maternity and neonatal services.

“This independence will be assured by the reserved powers set out in the agreement and be copper-fastened by the golden share to be held by the Minister for Health. It is important to note that the reserved powers can only be amended with the unanimous written approval of the directors and the approval of the Minister.

The religious ethos will not interfere with the provision of medical care. I am advised that the agreement ensures that a full range of health services will be available at the new hospital without religious, ethnic or other distinction.”

Micheál Martin: “Who will own the hospital?”

Humphreys: “I welcome the confirmation by the SVHG board that any medical procedure that is in accordance with the laws of the State will be carried out at the new hospital.

“I understand that the Religious Sisters of Charity resigned from the board of the SVHG some time ago and are currently finalising the process of transferring their shareholding in SVHG to a new company, St. Vincent’s Holdings CLG. I am informed that the Department of Health receives regular updates from the SVHG in respect of that share transfer.

“I understand that the Department’s Secretary General will meet the group’s chair this week to discuss a range of issues relating to the National Maternity Hospital project. Engagement is ongoing between the Department, the HSE, the SVHG and the National Maternity Hospital as regards the legal framework to be put in place to protect the State’s investment in the new hospital.

“The SVHG will provide the State with a 99-year lease of the land on which the new maternity hospital will be built, which will allow the State to retain ownership of the new facility. The State will provide an operating licence to the National Maternity Hospital DAC and the SVHG to enable the provision of health services in the newly constructed building.”

Shortall: “I do not know where the Minister got that reply, but it is at least 12 months out of date, having been overtaken by events. It is a disgrace that anyone gave her that reply to read out.

“What she described might have applied more than 12 months ago, but it certainly does not now. We are in a situation where the disposal of the site for the new maternity hospital cannot go ahead without the approval of the Vatican.

“In fairness to the Deputies present, the Minister should have had that information available to her. It has been made clear that we are waiting for the Vatican’s approval before we can proceed with the provision of a new national maternity hospital.

“Does the Minister accept that, as a republic, this is an outrageous situation to be in for the State? The new national maternity hospital’s estimated completion date was 2024, but there is no prospect of that being met.

“Does the Minister accept that it was reckless for the Government to allocate public money to this project without having title to the site? Does she accept that it is shameful that we are waiting for the approval of the Vatican in order to provide a decent national maternity hospital?”

Humphreys: “I have not had a chance to speak to the Minister on this matter, but the intent has not changed.”

Brendan Howlin: “What is meant by the phrase “the intent has not changed”?”

Humphreys: “There will be no interference in the provision of medical care in the new hospital. I want to be very clear on that intent. Doctors will carry out their duties—–”

Martin: “Who will own the hospital?”

Humphreys: “—–and a full range of health services will be available without religious, ethnic or other distinction.”

Shortall: “Will the Minister answer the questions? Will she get with the game?”

Humphreys: “The other issue—–”

Shortall: “It is a waste of time for people to come in here to ask questions only for Ministers to read out incomplete responses.”

An Ceann Comhairle: “Deputy, please.”

Humphreys: “I will ask the Minister for Health to contact the Deputy directly about the other issue she raised.”

Previously: National Maternity Hospital on Broadsheet

Transcript via Oireachtas.ie


GPO, O’Connell Street, Dublin 1.

Scenes from the Make Our National Maternity Hospital Public protest at the Spire…

….Meanwhile, this morning:

The St Vincent’s Healthcare Group (SVHG) has said the Sisters of Charity will have no role in the new National Maternity Hospital when it moves to south Dublin.

A spokeswoman for the healthcare group said: “The Religious Sisters of Charity announced in May 2017 that they were withdrawing from St Vincent’s Healthcare group.

They resigned from the board at that date.

“We are now working towards giving effect to their decision.

In fairness.

Sisters of Charity to have no role in new National Maternity Hospital (Newstalk)


A new petition has been set up on Uplift concerning the National Maternity Hospital calling for the hospital to be placed in public ownership.

The petition was created by the Campaign Against Church Ownership of Women’s Healthcare group.

The petition states:

Despite its name, the National Maternity Hospital is a private Catholic corporation. The hospital recently agreed to be taken over by a private company owned by the Sisters of Charity, St Vincent’s Healthcare Group (SVHG), which manages the nuns’ three hospitals.

The National Maternity Hospital is now slated to get a new facility built by the government on land owned by the nuns. This new build will cost an estimated €350m.

Contrary to what the Minister for Health has repeatedly claimed, the State will not own the new hospital. All the government will own are the bricks.

Current plans will see the maternity hospital governed by the nuns’ company, SVHG, and owned by a new private Catholic company to be set up by SVHG.

The Minister also claims the new hospital will be free of religious influence. Such claims ring hollow. With private ownership come legal powers and privileges. Private hospitals cannot be forced to provide services that conflict with their ethos. They cannot even be compelled to submit to independent inquiries into patient safety, as a High Court case taken by the same National Maternity Hospital against the Minister shows. The hospital recently won its case, blocking a HIQA inquiry following the death of a 34-year-old woman during surgery at the hospital.

The new maternity hospital was designed to be private and Catholic. We demand that it be public and secular.

Those who wish can sign the petition here.

Meanwhile, in The Sunday Times.

Justine McCarthy, in her opinion column, wrote about the matter, saying:

“…Ireland has a double standard in how it reacts to the past offences against humanity perpetrated by priests and those perpetrated by nuns.

Whatever vestige of blind faith Ireland still has, is preserved for the brides of Christ.

While male clerics have been all but stoned in the public square — regardless of their age, state of infirmity or personal goodness — nuns are popularly depicted as frail innocents.

Whenever the ghosts of nuns’ past outrages come back to haunt us all, up goes the refrain that society was the real culprit.

Old paternalistic habits die hard.

…This is not to say that innocent individuals, whether priests or nuns, ought to be vilified, for they should not, but it is to advocate that the same standards of accountability and vigilance apply equally to male and female congregations who oversaw institutional atrocities.”

Justine McCarthy: We can’t trust nuns on maternity care (The Sunday Times)

Previously: The Maternity Hospital Deal

How Deal Leaves Doors Open For Church Control (Legal Coffee Drinker)

This afternoon.

Outside the National Maternity Hospital on Holles Street, Dublin 2.

The Irish Centre for Bio-Ethical Reform is back.

Previously: Blanket Coverage

Via Darragh Doyle


Mark Sugrue writes:

The ICBR have been picketing Dublin maternity hospitals and each of them has a body worn camera filming the public. I’d like to raise awareness of the fact that, if they record you, you have the right to a copy of that video (and they have to manually blur out everyone else, which is expensive and takes them ages, meaning they have less time to picket). All the details you need to make a request are here.

St Vincent’s Chief Operating Officer Kay Connolly, Minister for Health Simon Harris and Dr Rhona Mahony, Master at Holles Street

The Religious Sisters of Charity will end our involvement in St Vincent’s Healthcare Group and will not be involved in the ownership or management of the new National Maternity Hospital.

For the last two years we have been actively working to find the best way to relinquish our shareholding of the St Vincent’s Healthcare Group (SVHG). It includes three hospitals: St Vincent’s University Hospital, St Vincent’s Private Hospital and St Michael’s Hospital, Dun Laoghaire.

Although the Sisters of Charity no longer have any direct involvement in the provision of healthcare services we remain dedicated to preserving the legacy of Mary Aikenhead, whose mission in life was to heal and care for the sick and poor.

We believe that the future continued success of SVHG can best be ensured by our transferring ownership of the group to a newly formed company with charitable status to be called “St Vincent’s”.

The Religious Sisters of Charity will have no involvement in this new company.

Upon completion of this proposed transaction, the requirement set out in the SVHG Constitution, to conduct and maintain the SVHG facilities in accordance with The Religious Sisters of Charity Health Service Philosophy and Ethical Code, will be amended and replaced to reflect compliance with national and international best practice guidelines on medical ethics and the laws of the Republic of Ireland.

The SVHG Board, management and staff will continue to provide acute healthcare services that foster Mary Aikenhead’s core values of dignity, compassion, justice, quality and advocacy.

They will ensure that the three hospitals in SVHG can continue to meet the need of their patients and families, so that every individual can always access the care and treatment they need to achieve health and well-being.

“St. Vincent’s” will replace the Sisters of Charity as the shareholders in SVHG and will meet the following criteria:

  • The shares in SVHG will be transferred to St. Vincent’s for a nominal/”peppercorn” consideration in return.
  • Consistent with the transfer of ownership, the Religious Sisters of Charity will no longer have a right to appoint Directors to the Board of SVHG, and the present two Sister Directors will resign from the Board with immediate effect.
  • “St. Vincent’s” will not be subject to undue influence by individuals or from any source.
  • “St. Vincent’s” will not seek to generate any profit or surplus, or to remunerate Directors for their work.
  • “St. Vincent’s” Directors will have required skillsets in law, finance, healthcare and social care.  They will be true to the values of our Foundress, recognising the right of everyone to access the care and treatment they need to achieve the best possible health care outcomes, regardless of race, ethnicity, religion, gender or personal means.
  • In the event of the liquidation or wind-up of St. Vincent’s at any time in the future, any surplus assets arising therefrom will be vested with the Charitable Regulator and utilised for healthcare purposes and facilities with similar values. This is in accordance with the provisions of the RSC Constitution.

Just as our Founder Mary Aikenhead saw the need in 1834 to establish a hospital to meet the needs of the sick and poor,  we believe that it is in the best interests of the patients and children born in the National Maternity Hospital today that they be provided with modern maternity and neonatal services that are women and infant-centred and integrated within the Elm Park campus.

It is now time for us to relinquish completely our involvement in SVHG.  We are confident that the Board, management and staff of SVHG will continue to maintain a steadfast dedication to providing the best possible acute healthcare to patients and their families in line with the values espoused by Mary Aikenhead.

This proposal has the full support of the Board of SVHG. It is subject to implementation of all necessary legal, financial and regulatory matters.

A statement released this morning by Sr Mary Christian, congregational leader of the Religious Sisters of Charity.

Previously: Taking On Church And State

Darkness To Light


This morning.

At Buswells Hotel on Molesworth Street, Dublin 2.

Dick Spicer, of the Humanist Association of Ireland, his son Norman Spicer, and writer and publicist Peigin Doyle, from Sligo, hold a press conference to explain Dick and Norman’s legal challenge over the Government’s decision to give ownership of the proposed National Maternity Hospital at the St Vincent’s Hospital site in Elm Park to the Religious Sisters of Charity.

Niamh Lyons, in the Ireland edition of The Times, reports:

A High Court summons has been filed by two private citizens, Dick Spicer and his son Norman Spicer, against the state, the health minister and the attorney-general.

Dick Spicer, 70, is a founding member of the Humanist Association of Ireland and has a track record of campaigning on church and state issues. He played a significant role in the divorce referendum.

The plaintiffs believe that placing the maternity hospital under the “religious influence” of the SVHG will be judged to be unconstitutional and are demanding that the government abandon the plan.

State to be sued over nuns’ role in new hospital (Niamh Lyons, The Times Ireland edition)

Previously: How Deal Leaves Doors Open For Church Control

Leah Farrell/Rollingnews

Screen Shot 2017-05-08 at 13.01.59

Chief Operating Officer at St Vincent’s University Hospital Kay Connolly; Minister for Health Simon Harris TD; and Dr Rhona Mahony, National Maternity Hospital master


At 5pm.

Is the deadline for submissions to An Bord Pleanála over the building of the new National Maternity Hospital on the St Vincent’s site in Elm Park, Dublin.

On March 10, the Minister for Health Simon Harris announced that the application was made.

On the same day, Paul Cullen, in The Irish Times, reported:

The move follows the resolution of an 18-month dispute between the two institutions over governance of the new hospital and the recent decision by An Bord Pleanála that the development constitutes strategic infrastructure and can therefore be fast-tracked through the planning process.

Despite this, on May 2, Taoiseach Enda Kenny told the Dáil:

While a planning application has not yet been lodged for the proposed new maternity hospital on the St. Vincent’s University Hospital complex, the proposed structure guarantees that the very best facilities will be available for expectant mothers that one would expect to see in the early part of this century.

After the application was made in March, An Bord Pleanála wrote to Dublin City Council for its views on the application.

The proposed building will be 10m higher than the height permitted (24m), under the Dublin City Development Plan.


Olivia Kelly, in The Irish Times, reports:

Three buildings on the St Vincent’s site already exceed the maximum permitted heights for the area: the clinical services building at just under 36m, the Nutley Wing at 40m and the private hospital building at more than 45m tall.”

“…Due to the presence of existing taller buildings the council had determined that the application did not contravene the city development plan.”

“However it said, even if the board determined that the building did not comply with the city development plan, it could still grant permission for the hospital, due to its veto powers under the planning acts.”

An Bord Pleanála is due to make a decision on the application by September 11, 2017.


In the latest edition of The Phoenix magazine…


Council backs maternity hospital move despite building height (Olivia Kelly, Irish Times)

Dáil transcript: Kildarestreet.com

Yesterday: Darkness Into Light

Rollingnews.ie and Ruairí McKiernan




This afternoon.

Participants in the ‘We Own Our Hospitals’ march, organised by Parents for Choice, Uplift, the National Women’s Council of Ireland and Justice for Magdalenes, make their way from the Garden of Remembrance, Parnell Square, Dublin 1 to Leinster House.

The march coincides with the Uplift petition – currently signed by 103,840 people (above) – against the decision to give sole ownership of the new National Maternity Hospital to the Religious Sisters of Charity.

RTÉ reports that “up to 1,500” people are taking part in the march.

The petition can be signed here

Protest over religious ownership of new National Maternity Hospital (RTE)

Pics: National Women’s Council of Ireland, Laura Hogan, Donal Adams, Paul Quinn, Natasha Duffy, Uplift, Kate Brennan Harding