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PAY PER VIEW; Tycoon moves into Ireland's dearest house..but EUR7.5m pad is just HOLIDAY home.

Byline: MICHELLE O'KEEFFE

EVERY time tycoon Terry Coleman gazes out of the window of his coveted home it will have cost him a fortune.

Terry, 59, and his wife Anita are finally moving into pounds 7.5million Sorrento House FIVE years after he bought it. They have also carried out pounds 6m of renovations.

Yet the end-of-terrace home on Dalkey's millionaire's row - which overlooks Killiney Bay - will only be their holiday home.

It was left empty while the Colemans fought a planning battle with council chiefs. But the car alarm millionaire and his 55-year-old wife eventually won, and spent the small fortune modernising the property.

Even though all work has finally been completed the couple, who live on their private estate at Alderley Edge, Manchester, will just use the seafront hideaway as a part-time residence.

A source said it took two years to renovate the dilapidated six-bedroom house, adding: "Working on Sorrento House was a very protracted and complex job because of planning problems.

"It took three years for the couple to get planning permission to carry out the work they wanted done.

"It then took another two years to do the building but now eventually it is at the finishing stages.

"They spent millions getting the house the way they want it and are very pleased with the job done.

"But they will only spend part of the year in Dalkey."

A spokesman for Dublin architects Dolan and Donnelly said: "The work is almost complete and we are just at the snag list stage now."

When the seaside paradise went up for sale in 1998 a host of top showbiz names including Michael Flatley, Enya and Pierce Brosnan were all rumoured to be interested. Even Hollywood superstar Jack Nicholson and singer George Michael were said to be bidding for the home.

But Terry from Dublin was determined to get the run-down 1850s pad and assumed it would be relatively easy to develop the site.

He got a rude awakening when planning bosses rejected his plans. The millionaire was forced to fight a three-year battle to gain planning permission from Dun Laoghaire/ Rathdown County Council.

The wealthy couple were forced to scale down their ambitious plans but now five years down the road all work is finally completed.

Another resident on Ireland's most exclusive terrace - where neighbours include Crying Game film director Neil Jordan, Van Morrison and Eddie Irvine, said the house had been neglected for years.

He added: "After the house was sold it was just left empty. For years it was let fall into decay with paintwork peeling of the walls and the garden overgrowing - it was really a bit of an eyesore.

"But once planning permission was granted the building started and the place looks great.

"It is practically restored to its former glory - all the walls and floors have been treated for damp, the interior was fitted and Terry went to great expense to restore all the original features.

"The garage built beside the house doesn't take away from the area at all.

"It took a long time but all the neighbours are relieved all the building work is finished and the property looks smart again.

"I don't know why the Colemans wouldn't want to live there permanently."

Initially the Colemans planned to renovate the house and build a two-storey four bay garage and a housekeeper's apartment.

In July 1999 the Council granted permission but furious neighbours lodged an objection with An Bord Pleannala.

The board refused to give the building work the go-ahead because it would ruin the historic house and the extension would be out of charac-ter with the eight other houses there.

Undaunted, the Colemans lodged another planning application in April 2000 and were granted permission for internal alterations.

The local county council continued to refuse permission for the two-storey garage building.

Determined Terry scaled down their plans replacing the proposed two storey building with an L-shaped single storey building with a six car garage and two bedrooms for staff, which was granted permission.

CAPTION(S):

STUNNING: The row of terraced houses in Dalkey, whose residents include celebrities Eddie Irvine, Van Morrison and Neil Jordan, has some beautiful views of Killiney Bay; BID: Hollywood star Jack; NEIGHBOUR: Racer Eddie; FRONT: Gate to the renovated Sorrento House; EXCLUSIVE: The celebs' road in Dalkey
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Publication:Sunday Mirror (London, England)
Date:Aug 17, 2003
Words:719
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