Misinformation about building intended to house homeless families circulated widely before it was badly damaged in extremist arson attack

Dublin City Council was bombarded with complaints about its plans for homeless accommodation at a building that ended up being set on fire on New Year’s Eve.

The council was inundated with calls from people suggesting it was going to be used to house “unvetted males” even though its intended use was for families without homes.

The Dublin Regional Homeless Executive (DRHE) received more than thirty complaints about the proposed use of the Shipwright premises in Ringsend with many opposing its use even as an accommodation hub for homeless families.

Despite repeated confirmations that the building would only be used for homeless services, complaints continued to arrive about its use for “undocumented people”, “single males”, and “unvetted men”.

Those terms have been commonly used by the far right and the Shipwright was set on fire on New Year’s Eve with serious damage caused to the former pub.

Rumours about the building were circulating as early as December 18 with the Dublin Regional Homeless Executive confirming they had signed a contract for its use.

An email to one local representative that day said: “The DRHE has contracted the Shipwright for use as emergency accommodation for homeless families.

“Initially, we were looking for emergency accommodation for single men but realised the location suited family accommodation. We have a dedicated complaints email, and you can give this out to anyone who has concerns and we will follow up.”