A former worker at the indoor market in Dundalk, which is closing down, says more needs to be done to keep Clanbrassil Street area going.
While Ebay announced 450 new jobs for the town this week, the indoor market was being cleared of stock, with the three remaining businesses now leaving the premises.
The indoor market opened 20 years ago and became a local landmark on Clanbrassil Street. Brendan Moore, worked in the indoor market in the mid 1990s and says it big blow to the town.
“Initially when it opened it was only open three days a week, but because of its popularity, it went to 6 days,” says Brendan, who worked in the Loft Café, which later become Willows.
“It was a place where people would go to meet. You used to be able to buy furniture made by St John of God’s and there was a great variety of shelves.”
“Having worked there for six years, I had the pleasure of meeting new friends and of having banter with the customer. It was great outlet for people to get to meet. It was also the last fruit and veg outlet on the street.”
While the market was once profitable, the Democrat understands that has been a steady decline in trade at the market, which is owned by Frank McArdle.
Occupants received just over two weeks notice that the market would stop trading in its current form. The lease on the market was on a rolling basis, with no fixed term contracts in place.
“The sudden announcement of the closure came as a shock to the remaining businesses. They will have to find new premises, while others may be forced onto the dole.”
All this week there has been the market has been in the process of being cleared, creating, for the meantime at least, another closed shop front.
“The Town Centre Manager needs to take this by the scruff of the neck and promote the centre of town. If they put as much effort as they did into getting the ice-rink in, into getting tenants on the street it would be a job well done.”
Speaking to the paper, Andrew Mawhinney said: “I hope and imagine that a new business outlet of some kind will be up and running there relatively quickley.
“It is a sad loss as it gave the area a some differentiation and character,” he said.