No retirement for publican Charlie Chawke despite pick-up in business

Accounts filed for two pubs

 Charlie  Chawke: said that last year his pub group, which employs 400 people, enjoyed a 10 per cent increase in revenues. Photograph: Matt Kavanagh

Charlie Chawke: said that last year his pub group, which employs 400 people, enjoyed a 10 per cent increase in revenues. Photograph: Matt Kavanagh

Sat, Mar 1, 2014, 01:01


One of the country’s best-known publicans said yesterday he can’t afford to retire and his Orchard Inn pub, bought for a record €22 million nine years ago, is probably worth half of that today.

Charlie Chawke – 65 in June – was yesterday commenting on accounts just filed to the Companies Office for two of his nine pubs, the Goat Bar and Grill in Goatstown and the Bank on Dublin’s College Green, that show an increase in profits in 2013.

It was outside the Goat in 2003 during an armed robbery that Mr Chawke was shot and later lost a leg. New accounts for the firm that runs the pub, Charjon Investments Ltd, show the firm’s accumulated profits increased by €97,117 to €1.55 million in the 12 months to the end of March 2013.

Accounts for College Inns Ltd, which operates his Bank pub show its accumulated profits increased by €124,601 to €384,326 in the year to the end of April 30th last. The firm’s cash pile rose from €505,774 to €645,507.

Mr Chawke said that last year his pub group, which employs 400 people, enjoyed a 10 per cent increase in revenues.

He said: “There has been a pick-up in all our pubs and we are successful because we work hard and give a great service.”

However, Mr Chawke said he cannot afford to retire because of financial commitments – the most recent accounts to outline loan repayments show the Limerick native’s business was paying over €500,000 per year on loan repayments on the group’s €22 million loan for the Orchard Inn – Ireland’s most expensive pub.

He bought the inn and site in Rathfarnham, Dublin, in 2005. “I don’t regret the day I bought it. It is trading very well,” he said.

Mr Chawke admitted that if the Orchard Inn was put for up for sale today, “I might get half of what I paid for it.”