Dun Mhuire not for sale but ‘viability under discussion’
STRONG rumours to the effect that Dun Mhuire Theatre in South Main Street, is up for sale, have been dismissed by a Diocesan spokesman.
‘There is no plan to sell the parish hall, it’s news to us’, said diocesan secretary and press officer Fr. John Carroll said. Fr. Carroll was reacting to rumours which have been circulating in Wexford town following the recent closure of the long-standing weekly bingo sessions in Dún Mhuire.
A decision was taken to end the bingo last month as it was no longer viable due to declining attendances and was operating at a loss. Since then, many people have been expressing concern that the theatre is being sold but this is absolutely not the case, according to Fr. Carroll.
‘The viability of the building is being looked at and dis- cussed, in terms of its current use and future best use, Like any other business, it’s about income and expenditure and we need to increase the income, ’ he said.
‘There is no plan to sell it . The idea of selling the building is news to us. It’s a facility at the service of the parish and it’s a case of trying to make the best use of it’.
Fr. Carroll explained that in any event it wouldn’t just be a case of placing Dun Mhuire Theatre up for sale as it is an asset in the ownership of the parish which is overseen by a parish committee and a parish finance committee and it would require a collective decision.
‘For any kind of proposal like that, there would have to be a meeting of the parish committee and it would have to be proposed to the diocese’, he said.
Dun Mhuire Hall was officially opened by Bishop James Staunton in December 1960 and has been one of the main performance venues in the town but now there is a greater choice of venue and many local and visiting drama and music groups use the National Opera House and local hotels to stage productions.
The building was formerly used as an official count centre for elections but is no longer hired for that purpose.
Wexford Pantomime Society, Wexford Drama Festival and Oyster Lane Theatre are still regular users of the theatre and have been for many years.
‘It’s a new world out there and it will have to find its place’, said Fr. Carroll.
Sharon Clancy onstage at the Dun Mhuire with Oyster Lane Theatre Group in 2016.
Fr John Carroll.