COVID-19 restrictions blamed for closure of three NI Menarys stores

Three Menarys Tempest stores in NI are due to close in the New Year due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

By Carmel Robinson
Tuesday, 15th December 2020, 12:39 pm

The stores in Craigavon’s Rushmere Shopping Centre, Cookstown and Omagh currently have closing down sales with the exact date of closure yet to be determined.

The Menary group, owned by brothers Philip and Stephen McCammon, have 19 stores across NI and a further two in the Republic of Ireland.

The Menary website states: “In line with the guidance from the NI Executive, Menarys will close our non-homeware stores (Coleraine, Newry Fashions, Cookstown Tempest and Omagh Tempest).

Menarys Tempest at Rushmere Shopping Centre. Photo courtesy of Google.

“All other stores will remain open in accordance with the regulations, under the heading: homeware, building supplies and hardware stores permitted to open.”

The news comes weeks after flagship department store Debenhams went into administration.

Speaking on Radio Ulster Stephen McCammon said that just half of its businesses reopened on Friday after the last lockdown.

“It’s been a very sad year and we’ve recently just entered consultation with staff in three branches which will regrettably have to close in the New Year because of Covid,” he said.

“There will be quite a number of job losses as a result of that.

“We made this very clear to the Executive whenever we were excluded from the multiple retail grant earlier on in the pandemic that, that would come at the cost of jobs.

“These two weeks are very significant to us. Based on performance we will probably take something like 20 per-cent, that’s a decline of 80 per-cent, of what we would normally take.

“The critical thing for now is getting through December with as much trade as we can manage.”

A spokesperson in Menary’s head office said he was unsure how many jobs would be going but added that some staff at the Rushmere store may move to their new shop in Armagh City.

He added that vouchers, gift cards and loyalty cards can be used at other stores.

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