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Festive boost for traders

The Chair of Newry City Centre Management Mr Jack Murphy has reported that there was healthy trading in the centre of Newry over the Christmas period. This is despite the fact that there was quite a amount of inclement weather in the run up to the big day and amid fears that a strong sterling would take a lot of shoppers south to spend their hard earned cash. “December was up on last year,” reported Mr Murphy. “We were very pleased that despite all this negative talk which I think is stemming from the southern media and there seemed times to be a lot of craic going on about the euro and the fact that the euro was weak against sterling. Yes, the euro is weak against sterling but you have got to look at it from a positive point of view that the strong sterling has given us a huge advantage in buying over our competitors in the south and as a result the old saying  applies the day you buy is the day you will sell. And if you can buy it right you can sell better and obviously with the lower VAT and lower running costs in Newry than the majority of people  we have been able to offer savings of between 10 and 15 percent on a like for like basis. And that is very important that you take it on a like for like basis as to how you are going to measure it.”

Mr Murphy who runs Jack Murphy Jewellers on Hill Street also reported that among his colleagues in the city centre that the trend was largely positive. “I was talking to a number of people and they felt in a way that perhaps footfall wasn’t the same but a lot of that was put down to the weather,” he continued. “Obviously during December we had a few rarely tough days which hit footfall and certainly you found not as many people on the street because of the weather but the other way of looking at it is the people who were on the street were buying. And the sales were stronger in the slightly higher end. There are a lot of people going south – we know that for a fact that people were going south and shopping south but a lot of people who came in here were saying they had gone to Dublin for the day or whatever the case maybe. But whenever they checked the prices against what they had been looking at at home-then they came back to spend, which is always very good.”


Newry Democrat

5th January 2016