Once every Irish home had or wanted some Waterford Crystal, no matter where in the world an Irish family found themselves. It was a link to the traditions of the old country that was proudly put on display, and sometimes even actually used, and it's value to the Irish took can not be counted in mere cash.
But this week, after the site went into receivership in 2009, demolition work finally began on the former Waterford Crystal plant in Kilbarry in Waterford city, bringing an era to an end for the legendary Irish glass making company.
The landmark building was reportedly purchased by Noel Frisby Construction company last year and it is believed there are plans to build new office space and possibly a call centre at the site.
The Waterford Crystal went into receivership in 2009 and the plant closed with the loss of 600 skilled jobs.
Just four and a half years ago the Waterford Crystal plant was one of the most popular tourist destinations in Ireland, at the time it's larger than life sized chandeliers could be seen by passing cars on the Cork Road, but they have reportedly been turned off and taken away.
Now demolition crews are dismantling the old factory buildings where the chandeliers and other world-famous pieces that were the pride of the county were once made.
Artisan crystal was made in Waterford for hundreds of years and the business reportedly moved to the Cork Road premises in the 1960's.
According to RTE, 600 people worked on the site when it closed in 2009, until a reduced workforce picked up at the new House of Waterford Crystal at The Mall the following year.
Developer Noel Frisby, who reportedly bought the 36-acre Cork Road site last year for an undisclosed sum, hopes that hundreds of new employees in new industries will be back working on the site before long.
Frisby is reportedly turning the site into an IT and office park which he says will attract major employers into the area.
'For far too long, the IDA are saying there’s no place for people to come in and locate in Waterford, so we’re providing that,' Frisby said this week.
The old factory, visitor centre and gift shop are reportedly being gutted to allow for the development of new offices whilst the old manufacturing plant and warehouse which have been described as 'beyond redemption' are being demolished.
Meanwhile the site’s location, near to the Waterford Institute of Technology campus, could allow for link-ups with the college, particularly in the areas of IT and research, the developers hope.
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