A GYM boss previously declared bankrupt by a Belfast court has opened a new business on St Joseph Street without planning permission.
Dozens of residents on the street have objected to plans by Mehran Ghanbari to now retain the use of a former warehouse as the Kings Gym, complaining of loud music pumping from the premises until late into the evening.
Former customers and staff at Mr Ghanbari’s Platinum Gym in Derry claimed they had been left out of pocket in 2011 when that enterprise suddenly closed its doors. Some customers claimed it had been accepting membership fees hours before the shutters came down.
This Tuesday Mr Ghanbari told the Limerick Leader he would be happy to discuss the services offered at the gym but politely declined to comment on his previous financial difficulties or the objections to his planning application to Limerick City Council.
Mr Ghanbari, a native of Iran, was declared bankrupt following a petition by his former landlord in Derry to a Belfast court in April 2011. British law can typically see a person discharged from bankruptcy after 12 months in that jurisdiction.
Kings Gym has been operating from a former light industrial warehouse on St Joseph Street since late last year. No membership fees apply here with patrons given a day pass for €3 and a monthly pass for €20.
Open until 9pm on week nights, it has attracted a number of complaints in relation to noise.
Just under 30 residents on St Joseph Street and Wolfe Tone Street have objected to the “low frequency thumping and muffled dance music constantly audible from the building and vibrating through to the interiors of the surrounding homes”.
A sign hanging outside the gym entrance does request patrons to keep noise levels down out of respect for the neighbours.
Labour’s Cllr Joe Leddin has also supported those residents who object that there is not sufficient parking in the area for the numbers using the gym.
“There isn’t a problem with the business itself, it’s just that it’s the wrong location. As everybody who knows the area will tell you, you can’t swing a cat on St Joseph Street,” he said.
An application to retain the use of the building as a gym was lodged in early June but planners have sought further information on issues including noise and traffic.