#Portisham - A man who converted a decommissioned minesweeper into a houseboat will have to wait for a Supreme Court decision on his appeal against a previous ruling that the vessel can be scrapped.
According to The Irish Times, Fingal County Council took legal action in 2012 against Shane Kennedy, who lives on the former RN Portisham moored in Balbriggan Harbour since 2010, after he refused its offers of alternative accommodation following complaints about the condition of the vessel.
It was since ruled by the High Court that the Portisham was "unseaworthy, unregistered and uninsured" – a finding disputed by Kennedy, who claims his own surveyor found the boat "basically sound".
However, the core issue of the dispute is whether the vessel constitutes an "unauthorised development" within the meaning of the Planning and Development Act 2000 - with Justice Mary Laffoy saying the onus is on the council to provide proof that the boat is located on or over the "foreshore".
Commenting on the Afloat forum more than two years ago, Kennedy lambasted Ireland's lack of provision for houseboats, saying "it is a disgrace that apart from a few private inland berths, the only legislation I have found is to ban liveaboards" such as himself.
The Irish Times has more on the story HERE.