Dozens of people who are renting accommodation in what has been described as an 'unauthorised hostel' in south Dublin have been ordered to leave the premises by midday next Wednesday.

The Circuit Civil Court was told there were up to 17 individuals in one room and another 36 being housed in the basement.

Last Monday, the Circuit Civil Court heard that 'The Pines' in Lehaunstown, Cabinteely was considered a fire and health risk. 

Dún Laoghaire Rathdown County Council had become aware of reports that up to 70 people were being accommodated in the house and for health and safety reasons had carried out an inspection. 

The court heard council inspectors found that almost every room they could obtain access to had been filled with either double-beds or bunk beds. 

Today Michael Binchy, barrister for the owner of the property, Richard Stanley, told the court his client was an elderly man in his 80s who had rented the property to another man, Christian Carter, with addresses at Dunedin Drive, Monkstown, and at Grove Park, Rathmines, in Dublin.

The court heard Mr Carter had been sub-letting the property and the owner had been unaware of the situation.

At issue was the change of use to the property from a private dwelling to one where paying customers were accommodated in large communal dormitories.

Mr Binchy said Mr Carter had stated in an email he would empty the premises by 1 March next. 

Mr Stanley and the council had concerns about the welfare of the residents and thought the date was too far away.

Mr Stanley consented to orders sought by Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown County Council restraining the use of the house as a multi-occupancy dormitory property.

Judge Jaqueline Linnane was told that the residents were aware of the proceedings "coming down the track" and of various inspections of the premises by the local authority. 

The court heard they expected they would have to vacate the premises.

But this afternoon, some of those living in the house told RTÉ News they were shocked to hear they would have to leave by the middle of next week.

The matter is due back before the court next Thursday.