Traders around North Tipperary had a mixed Christmas, with some towns doing better than others in the lead-up to the festive period. The general consensus among traders in Thurles and Nenagh was that the towns had definitely held their own and may even be slightly up on last year.
However, in Roscrea, trade was reported slightly down with a bit of a surge on Christmas Eve.
In Thurles, the feeling was that some shops had done better than others, with a late surge helping to boost sales.
Paddy Stakelum of Stakelums Menswear, Thurles, reported a good Christmas, with sales up and the post-Christmas trade holding its own.
In Nenagh, traders also reported a good Christmas, but some said while shopping centres did well, town centre sales had been mixed.
Roscrea chamber president Seamus Browne said that while there was a bit of a surge on Christmas Eve around the town, the run-up to Christmas had been back a little.
“That seems to be in line with what happened nationally with people doing their shopping early in December,” he said.
He put the town’s early rush, down to its Christmas market, which attracted 150 stands, 60 per cent of which came from Tipperary. He was hopeful that any increase in business in the cities would eventually filter down to rural towns.
Mr Browne also said the bad weather in December had an effect on trade, as had the lack of lending. “A lot of people are dealing with moneylenders and resorting to using them at Christmas. You could see where the money was coming from,” he said.
Mr Browne was hoping that whatever buzz was in Roscrea over Christmas will last into January with the winter sales now on.
There was no one available from Templemore Traders Association for a comment before going to press, but Mayor Martin Fogarty said it would appear business had been good with the town car parks and the town square busy in the run-up to Christmas Eve.