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Removal order Judge orders parents of newlyweds to take down marquee ahead of wedding reception

Judge Ni Chulachain said she noticed from photographs of the marquee taken by Mr Donovan that there were 11 tables surrounded by chairs in the marquee, enough chairs to accommodate more than 60 people.

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The wedding marque at Burton Park, Leopardstown which was ordered to be taken down by Judge Sinead  Ní Chulachain. Picture Colin Keegan, Collins Dublin

The wedding marque at Burton Park, Leopardstown which was ordered to be taken down by Judge Sinead Ní Chulachain. Picture Colin Keegan, Collins Dublin

The wedding marque at Burton Park, Leopardstown which was ordered to be taken down by Judge Sinead Ní Chulachain. Picture Colin Keegan, Collins Dublin

The parents of a couple married in Co Armagh this morning have been told by a judge to take down a marquee they erected at a site in Burton Park, Leopardstown Road, Dublin, for an evening reception today.

Judge Sinead Ni Chulachain granted Dun Laoghaire Rathdown County Council leave to hire an independent contractor to carry remove the marquee if defendants Michael and Johanna Connors refused to do it themselves.

The judge also told the local authority’s barrister Niall Flynn she would make an order restraining the Connors, and anyone else knowing about the court injunction, from interfering with independent contractor employees while demolishing the wedding marquee.

Mr Flynn, who appeared with solicitor Liz Neary for the council, said Mr Connors yesterday told a council official he knew he was breaching tenancy and Covid-19 rules and regulations but the reception at No 3 Burton Park, Leopardstown Road, Dublin 8, would go ahead

“Council acting administration officer Liam Donovan was told by Mr Connors last evening that his son was getting married this morning in Co Armagh and the marquee was to facilitate the bridal party among 40 guests and would be going ahead,” Mr Flynn said.

He told the Circuit Civil Court that when told he was breaching regulations Connors replied: “I know all that. I know I’m breaching my tenancy but it is my son's wedding and he has no other place to go.”

The council was also given leave to broadcast the court’s orders on national radio stations even as the bride and groom and their guests were on their way from Co Armagh for today’s planned 6pm reception in Co Dublin.

Mr Donovan said the gardai were supporting the council’s application and when he asked Mr Connors to take the marquee down he replied: “I can’t take it down. My son’s wedding is going ahead and I accept the consequences of not taking it down.”

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A property on Leopardstown Road in Dublin with a Marquee.

A property on Leopardstown Road in Dublin with a Marquee.

A property on Leopardstown Road in Dublin with a Marquee.

Ms Neary, a solicitor in the legal department of Dun Laoghaire Rathdown County Council, said after the injunction application that the council would be moving immediately to take the marquee down or hire an independent contractor to do the work for it.

Judge Ni Chulachain said she noticed from photographs of the marquee taken by Mr Donovan that there were 11 tables surrounded by chairs in the marquee, enough chairs to accommodate more than 60 people.

Mr Flynn told the court the council considered the planned reception to be a breach of Covid-19 regulations in the middle of a global pandemic as well as breaking a tenancy agreement. The local authority was also concerned about the lack of insurance cover for this evening’s event.

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Judge Ni Chulachain gave the council leave to serve personal notice on Mr Connors and also pin up notices outlining details of the court’s orders.

The judge also directed that everyone associated with the reception, including the bridal party and guests, be warned they had been restrained from entering the marquee.

Mr Flynn indicated that the council had significant concerns relating to the use of the marquee for the wedding reception which, he said, unless restrained by the court the Connors planned to go ahead with.

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