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“I feel like I have landed in heaven” – 18 new social homes in scenic Bantry

18 new social homes, delivered by Clúid Housing as part of the landmark regeneration of the former Mercy Convent and school have been officially opened in Bantry, Co. Cork.

The 18 homes are a combination of 10 one-and two-bed homes in the converted convent and cookery school buildings, and eight new-build single storey homes. The works also sought to stabilise and preserve the convent’s chapel for future use.

Eibhlin O’Connor, Chief Commercial Officer, Clúid Housing commented: “It’s wonderful to see this historic site bustling with life. The convent and school have been a focal point in Bantry for 160 years, so their regeneration has been of huge importance to Clúid, and the local community.

“Our decades of experience were certainly called upon for this project. It has been a labour of love – complete with challenges and set-backs – so it’s fantastic to be here today celebrating its official opening. The work done by the team in Clúid, and our expert partners, has preserved the historic buildings and provided 18 high-quality, secure homes that will benefit the community of Bantry for generations to come. We thank Cork County Council for trusting us with a site of such great significance, and hope that your trust has been repaid.”

Paul Barry, who recently moved into his new home in the development, said “Before moving into my new home in the Bantry Convent, I was living in emergency accommodation for seven months. This was a very difficult time in my life, and a time when I was really struggling. However, all has changed since I got the keys to my new home, and I feel like I have landed in heaven. I love my new home and I couldn’t ask for more. There is a nice little community emerging in the old convent and it’s lovely to be a part of it. I am very grateful to Clúid for providing me with this opportunity and I hope to be living in the old Schoolhouse for many years to come.”

Deputising for the Mayor of the County of Cork, Cllr. Danny Collins remarked, “It is great to see such a prominent historical vacant building being brought back into use here in Bantry, and Cork County Council have been delighted to collaborate with Clúid in its delivery. These much-needed homes will help to meet social housing needs locally for older members of our community. The development will contribute positively to the vibrant and welcoming community of Bantry and will allow older people to live in their own area and enjoy a high quality of life through established connections with the community.”

The homes were funded by the Department for Housing, Local Government and Heritage under the CAS scheme administered by Cork County Council to provide secure, affordable homes for people on the county’s housing list. The homes are A-rated, so are efficient to run, and many retain some of the unique features of the original buildings, including arched sash windows and high ceilings.

Eibhlin O’Connor added: “Clúid has delivered thousands of homes through our various construction projects and with our development partners across the country, but converting historic buildings into high-quality, comfortable, liveable homes is not a straightforward task. Our in-house teams worked with a variety of skilled partners to deliver these fabulous homes, including the main contractor, Cork-based Cahalane Brothers, the enabling works contractor, Cetti Building Contractors Limited, JCA Architects, O’Connor Sutton Cronin, Delap & Waller, KSNPM, MACC Consultants and PJ Barrett & Co. I’d like to thank them all for the dedication they showed to our vision of making these landmark buildings a great place to live.”


Notes to the Editor:
Fiona O’Connor – Communications & Engagement Manager – Clúid Housing
+353 87 113 5411 –

About Clúid Housing

Clúid Housing is an independent, not-for-profit charity, and is the largest approved housing body (AHB) or housing association in Ireland. Established in 1994, Clúid leads the way in providing high quality, affordable rented homes to people in housing need. We work in partnership with local authorities to provide housing to those on social housing waiting lists. Clúid own and manage over 11,000 properties providing a home to over 30,000 people.

Clúid delivered 1,085 new homes in 2023 and is on-track to deliver 1,200 new social and Cost Rental homes in 2024.

Our team of nearly 400 highly qualified professional employees are committed to providing quality housing and services that enable people to create homes and thriving communities.

Clúid Housing is a member of the Housing Alliance, the collaboration of seven of Ireland’s largest Approved Housing bodies (AHBs). The Housing Alliance’s purpose is to work with Government and Local Authorities to promote the delivery of social and affordable homes, address barriers to delivery and advocate strongly for responsible, professional housing management.

In 2022, our seven not-for-profit members delivered more than 4,000 of Ireland’s voluntary housing stock delivered that year.

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