A developer, who was involved in a stand off with residents over fire safety measures in a Ratoath housing complex is the man behind the current row over attempts to construct apartments on an Ashbourne housing estate.

In 2015 Michael Ryan owned Saltan properties, which became embroiled in a dispute with residents of the Riverwalk Apartments in Ratoath over fire safety issues surrounding the complex.

Now Ryan’s Rybo company has emerged as the developers behind attempts to construct a number of apartments on Ashbournes Millbourne estate, in what residents are saying is the only green area available for their children to play on.

In the last week workers erected fencing around the green area forcing children to play on a busy estate road.

One irate Mum told Meath Live, ‘I’m prepared to lie down in front of the first bulldozer that tries to move in, that’s my kids play area and I will defend it.’

Angry residents have told how those behind the proposed development are attempting to use a ‘divide and conquer’ strategy in their attempts to get people to back their proposal.

One revealed, ‘ Rybo have put their fourth planning application in for change of use for this site, they have now suggested building apartments rather than the houses in their original applications and a number of us have lodged objections.

‘One resident received a call from a local councillor, earlier this week, requesting that some of the residents committee should meet Michael Ryan in the councillors office, but we won’t be doing that we are united on this and in the interest of transparency we are saying that every resident of the Millbourne estate meets him or nobody does.

‘Not just the residents committee, you understand but a representative of every house if they wish to attend, as that way everyone will know who said what.’

Meath Live has seen correspondence to the residents committee from yet another councillor dating back to 2017, in which an offer from Michael Ryan was forwarded to them.

It is understood that an updated offer suggests Rybo will provide an alternative green space, but that residents feel it is not suitable, and in fact Bord Pleanala have said as much when rejecting prevoius applications

A source told us, ‘The area offered was originally a buffer zone between Millbourne and an industrial estate, it just won’t work as a kids play area.

‘We are writing an open letter to the Councillor to confirm that we will not meet with him (Michael Ryan) but would like a copy of the offer on headed paper outlining the legal offer and confirmation from Meath County Council of same.

‘We were shocked to see the fences go up around the green area last week, we were sold the houses with the clear impression that the green area was part of the estate.

‘Now our kids are being forced to play on a road that has a reasonable amount of traffic coming up and down it there is a huge determination amongst people to ensure the safe green play area is retained.’