Category Archives: Shelbourne College

Latest round-up on closed colleges

17 private colleges in Ireland closed between April 2014 and May 2015. Below is a round-up of the legal position of the companies behind each college at 5 August 2017.

Where there has been no liquidation – i.e. the majority of the closed colleges – there is no possibility of a refund (Read why). Only two liquidations are complete (English in Dublin and Cogan International). 6 colleges remain in liquidation and, in almost all cases, we do not expect any money to be available for return to students at the end of the process (Read why).

Any future updates after the date of this post can be accessed by clicking the links below:

Further colleges which were not part of the 2014/15 closures have also ceased operations more recently:

Closed college round-up – June 2016

Just over two years on from the start of the college closures, some of the companies behind the colleges have been legally dissolved, some remain in liquidation (a process to manage the closing down of a company) and some are not in liquidation, which effectively means they can be expected to stay in a state of limbo until they are struck off and dissolved.
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Company behind Shelbourne College listed for strike-off by CRO

Watson College Limited, the company that traded as Shelbourne College, has been listed for strike off by the Companies Registration Office (CRO). This usually happens when a company has not filed annual returns (accounts) for a long period, as in this case; Watson College Limited’s last filing was at the end of 2013. There is a short period during which directors of a company can resolve the situation but that would appear unlikely in this instance. After strike off, a company ceases to exist as a legal entity.

Strike-off is an expected step for all colleges which have ceased trading without going into liquidation. The company being listed for strike-off does not make any change to the overall situation for anyone who lost money to this college.


Update 12/4/16 – Allied Irish College Ltd, the Cork-based tie in with Millennium College and the 5th college to close in 2014, has also been listed for strike-off.

Update 18/4/16 – Watson College Limited has been struck off the register of companies and is now dissolved.

€500,000 still unaccounted for one year on from Shelbourne College closure

One year ago today, Shelbourne College shut its doors following media revelations that it had been stalling dozens of students on their right to fee refunds after visa refusals – a sum that was later put at over €500,000 with around 150 students affected. 12 months later, the whereabouts of this cash is no clearer despite ICOS’ calls on the Garda Bureau of Fraud Investigation and the Office of the Director of Corporate Enforcement to Investigate the matter.

In October 2015, anti-corruption group Transparency International added its voice to this call. In its statement it said:

“We are aware that [ICOS] has made reports to the ODCE and the GBFI to have this matter fully investigated and those responsible prosecuted.  Unfortunately, the Council has been disappointed by the responses from them.  Students are drawing the conclusion that the Irish authorities do not care about the issue.”