Belfast Telegraph

Owner of historic city building owes Ulster Bank over £20m

By Clare Weir

A Co Londonderry firm - which owns one of the most historic buildings in Derry city centre - owes over £20m to Ulster Bank, according to an administrator's report.

Administrators were called in to DAB Developments, formerly known as Brookview Developments, in February.

The firm, which was founded in 1999, was behind the Copperthorpe housing development in Drumahoe on the outskirts of the city and also owned the former Northern Counties club at Bishop Street in Derry.

The listed building is currently for sale with O'Connor Kennedy Turtle and has planning permission for part demolition and part new build extension with change of use permitted to a restaurant with office space.

DAB Developments is said to have suffered badly as a result of the property market crash, owing around £26m to the bank and around half a million in total to smaller creditors, who are unlikely to see their money.

The first two phases of the Copperthorpe development were started in 2009 and all 76 units have been sold.

Only nine of a proposed 50 units as part of the third phase have been completed and sold and half of the site has been put up for sale by the Republic's 'toxic bank' Nama, which took over the assets of the other company involved with Copperthorpe - Mc Daid Developments, also based in Derry.

Property developer Peter Mc Daid was declared bankrupt in June 2011 after the collapse of McDaid Developments, which is thought to have cost Bank of Ireland almost £36m.

Forty acres of land formerly owned by McDaid Developments, also in Drumahoe, is for sale at £3m - although insiders said the land was worth well over £10m at the height of the property boom.