Statement in response to Dunluce Centre report

Statement in response to Dunluce Centre report

Tue, March 01, 2022

In response to today’s BBC News NI article (Tuesday 1st March 2022) about the sale of the Dunluce Centre, the Mayor of Causeway Coast and Glens Borough Council Councillor Richard Holmes has said the Council is very surprised at the tenor of the report.

In a statement, the Mayor said: “At all times throughout this process, the Council followed best practice and asked for bids for a leisure and tourism facility to bring much needed recreational facilities to the North Coast. 

“As reported by the BBC, one bid for a hotel development was submitted. As is required in any sale of such an asset, and as was required by the rules of the procurement competition in this case, which applied equally to all bidders, evidence of funding was sought from the proposed hotel developer.

“Regrettably, despite the Council providing multiple extensions, and issuing multiple reminders, after 14 weeks the information requested had not been provided. Consequently, this bidder voluntarily withdrew from the process.

“The rigorous development brief process was approved by Council, had full political engagement throughout, and involved a Strategic Investment Board advisor, the Department for Communities and an independent expert legal team.

“Unfortunately, the BBC has provided a platform for selected individuals to provide their views, absent of any objective understanding of the open and transparent process undertaken in this case.”