THE owner of a hotel into which a helicopter crashed just over a week ago has been refused planning permission to demolish the building and erect 60 apartments.
The pilot of a privately owned Sikorsky S76 miraculously escaped when the helicopter crash-landed in the car park of the Neptune Hotel and Leisure complex in Bettystown, Co Meath, and burst into flames yards from Colaiste na hInse secondary school, which is housed in the building, on September 18.
But yesterday the hotel's owner Denis Reddan received further bad news when An Bord Pleanala refused his request for permission to demolish the building to make way for apartments. The five-storey scheme would have included nine retail units, two offices and 179 underground parking spaces.
Meath County Council had refused permission for the scheme and An Bord Pleanala yesterday confirmed that decision, claiming the "scale and height" of the plan would "detract" from the town centre.