By Rachel D’Arcy
Rory O’Neill, better known as Panti Bliss, has won the appeal for the legendary Pantibar sign to keep its pride of place on Capel Street.
Dublin City Council rejected an application to keep the LED sign hanging above the gay bar in May. They cited a number of reasons for the rejection, the primary reason being that it would “impact adversely on the character and integrity of the area”.
O’Neill announced on Panti Bliss’ Facebook today that he won his appeal, and permission for the sign was granted. “Absolutely DELIGHTED to say we won our appeal and An Bord Pleanála have granted permission for the Pantibar sign to stay!”, he wrote on Facebook on Thursday morning.
The appeal was won as An Bord Pleanála “agree that “exceptional circumstances” apply and that “the sign is integral to the social, historical and cultural significance of the current use of the premises.” O’Neill’s post garnered over twenty-seven thousand likes on his Facebook page in just over half an hour.
When the removal was initially proposed, it incited anger among the LGBT community in Dublin, leading to an online petition that gathered over 18,000 signatures. O’Neill said he would appeal the decision, and would ‘fight tooth and nail’ to keep the sign hanging over one of Dublin’s first gay bars.
Pantibar originally erected the backlit sign in March of this year.