A journalist is challenging the Bad Ass Cafe’s bid to renew its singing and music licence due to “horrific” noise pollution in Temple Bar.

Frank McDonald, the former environment editor of the Irish Times, who has lived in the Temple Bar area for more than 20 years, told Dublin District Court he would be objecting to an application by Beneqeues Ltd, the operators of the popular restaurant.


It is trying to renew a singing and music licence, but it was described by Mr McDonald in court yesterday as “the most noise-abusive” premises in Temple Bar.

Constance Cassidy, for Beneqeues Ltd, told Judge Michael Coghlan that Mr McDonald said noise from the venue could be heard from his roof terrace and bedroom window.

She said her client wanted a sound engineer to carry out tests from the journalist’s home, but he has refused. She argued that this could lead to work being carried out to alleviate his concerns.

In reply, the author and award-winning journalist said there was no point as his home was about 150 metres away and noise levels at Temple Bar Square and Crown Alley were worse.

He also said the volume could be turned down on the dates when the tests were being carried out. Mr McDonald said it had been an ongoing issue since 2011, and another venue in the area had reduced “entertainment noise breakout” but the Bad Ass Cafe had not.

He described the premises as a pub, but Ms Cassidy said it had been cleared of that charge in High Court proceedings.

Mr McDonald, the chairperson of the Temple Bar Residents’ Association, said he had volumes of evidence about the noise pollution which he described as “horrific at times”.

He also said he had substantial video evidence “that shows that this place has been the most abusive in the neighbourhood for a number of years”. He said he had other evidence in relation to the fitness and character of the licensee.

Ms Cassidy said the applicant wished to fix a date for sound readings at his address and other nearby locations.

Judge Coghlan adjourned the hearing until next month.

Source: The Hearld, to read the article please click here.