By Eoin Kelleher
ROSCREA has lost out on dozens of potential decentralisation jobs following the government’s decision to scrap Fianna Fáil’s plans to relocate various Department jobs into regional towns.
However, Roscrea may now be in line for a significant jobs boost following speculation that a major pharmacy chain has entered into negotiations to set up shop in the old Tesco site in the town centre.
UP to 500 jobs had been promised to Tipperary by the last government. Some 66 of these positions will not now be moved to Roscrea, following last week’s announcement.
The previous government decentralised 200 jobs from the Garda Headquarters to Thurles, 200 from the Department of Justice to Tipperary town, and pledged to move 100 jobs to Roscrea under the auspices of the Equality Authority.
Some 34 people now work in the offices of the Equality Authority on the Benamore Road, out of a promised full compliment of 100. Roscrea is also home to the Civil Defense as a result of decentralisation. All 28 jobs pledged under that scheme, have been in place since 2005.
Business sources in Roscrea said the announcement did not come as a huge shock, as it had been well flagged in advance. However, there are some green shoots for the local economy in Roscrea.
The Tipperary Star understands that the British retail giant, Boots Pharmacy, are currently in negotiation to occupy about half of the old Tesco site in Roscrea town centre, owned by Tiernan Properties. A spokesperson clarified after the Tipperary Star had gone to press on Tuesday, that they could not confirm the story. “Boots Ireland is continually looking at new opportunities to expand its network of outlets across Ireland, but is unable to confirm anything in this regard relating to Roscrea,” said the spokesperson.
Earlier this year, Tiernan’s were involved in opening the new Tesco store in Roscrea, and committed themselves to filling the vacant Tesco site before Christmas. Roscrea Chamber of Commerce has been working with Tiernan’s to help ensure that the initial development plans are fulfilled. It’s hoped that the arrival of Boots may increase footfall around the site, which contains several locally owned shops.
Speculation is also mounting in the town that more jobs may be announced after a well known discount store posted an advertisement for a store manager in recent days. The website, linked to the E2 discount chain of shops, put out the advertisement on its website on Monday night.
At the time of going to press, the Equality Authority in Roscrea was unavailable for comment as the staff were taking part in their annual conference.