Carrigstown: reprieved

CARRIGSTOWN, the fictional home of RTÉ soap Fair City, has been granted a one-year reprieve after the station received planning permission to keep sets for the popular drama at its Montrose headquarters.

Permission expired in July and local residents, including the German ambassador, submitted complaints to Dublin City Council objecting to further retention of the structures.

Planning officials last week granted permission to RTÉ to keep the sets for 12 months, but ordered that the entire production set be removed from its current location on the RTÉ campus by next December.

Strict filming times for the soap have also been put in place.

"The entire production set [is] to be removed from site within one year from date of the grant of permission, unless before that time a further permission is granted by the planning authority or by An Bord Pleanála on appeal," the council said.

Filming between 5pm and 10pm has been restricted to once a month in "the interest of residential amenities" while RTÉ has also been instructed to restrict weekend filming hours.

According to the letter of complaint by German ambassador Busso von Alvensleben, the embassy had to contact gardaí after builders had been asked to stop hammering at 1.30am.

It phoned gardaí in Donnybrook at 2.15am when the noise had not stopped.

"A film set located in such proximity causes regular interference, noise and disturbance by workmen, passing traffic, lighting and utilisation of film equipment at irregular times, day and night.

"The guests of the ambassador will at all times be within earshot and eyesight of the film set, which therefore presents an unacceptable overview of our clients' property and the persons coming and going to it from time to time and therefore it is also an unacceptable security risk."