New men’s clothes shop Pinstripe Punk opens in Dundalk

Inside the store on Crowe Street

Inside the store on Crowe Street

A new men’s clothes shop opened its doors in Dundalk this morning.

Pinstripe Punk is located at 5 Crowe Street and is run by local man Darren Guest, who many will recognise as having worked in the nearby Tony McDonnell’s Menswear over the years.

Pinstripe Punk promises “something totally unique for Dundalk and men’s fashion” so what are you waiting for? Pop in and see all they have to offer.

Pinstripe Punk promises something totally unique to Dundalk

Pinstripe Punk promises something totally unique to Dundalk

Work progressing on new Carlingford Ferries terminal

Greenore and Greencastle are just 1.1 miles apart by sea but 32 miles apart by road

Greenore and Greencastle are just 1.1 miles apart by sea but 32 miles apart by road

Work is progressing on the Carlingford Ferries terminal, which will run from Greenore to Greencastle in Co Down in just 15 minutes.

carlingfordferriesThe hope is to have the ferry operational by next April with the piles for the pontoons of the car ferry being driven into Carlingford Lough this week.

The journey is just 1.1 miles by sea but 32 miles apart by land. At present it takes just under an hour to drive from Greenore to Greencastle.

Around 18 jobs will be created when the ferry is up in running, with 11 of them based in Louth. It is estimated that the ferry would operate for 350 days of the year and prove a substantial boost to tourism in the area.

The service will be run by Limerick-based Frazer Ferries Ltd.

Starting to drive the piles in for the pontoons for the new car ferry, from Greenore to Greencastle in Co Down

Starting to drive the piles in for the pontoons for the new car ferry, from Greenore to Greencastle in Co Down

Full occupancy expected in the Marshes Shopping Centre by Christmas

Staff at the opening of the Tiger store in the Marshes Shopping Centre back in June. Other big names are expected in the centre shortly. Picture: Arthur Kinahan

Staff at the opening of the Tiger store in the Marshes Shopping Centre back in June. Other big names are expected in the centre shortly. Picture: Arthur Kinahan

Kennedy Wilson, the company which acquired the Marshes Shopping Centre in Dundalk last September, expects the centre to be at full occupancy by Christmas.

The recent opening of the likes of Tiger and Benefit Cosmetics is set to be followed in the coming weeks by the opening of fashion outlet H&M and outdoor clothing and accessories chain, Trespass.

The Marshes will be 10 years open on November 3rd

The Marshes will be 10 years open on November 3rd

CBRE and Bannon are the agents for the Marshes Shopping Centre and Bernardine Hogan of CBRE told The Irish Independent today that including lettings in the pipeline, she expects occupancy levels to increase from 75% when Kennedy Wilson bought the centre to 94% by September.

She added: “I expect to achieve full occupancy in time for the Christmas season.”

The centre is reporting football of around 80,000 a week, with rents ranging form €35 and €55 per sq ft depending on location, size of the store and convenant.

Kennedy Wilson bought the Marshes for €44.5 million last year. The centre will celebrate its 10th anniversary this November.

Meanwhile, Equivalenza, the global chain which manufactures perfumes and aromatic products and sells them through its own stores is also on the lookout for an outlet in Dundalk to follow on from the opening of stores in Letterkenny and Donaghmede recently.

New ski slope and trampoline park planned for Dundalk

tottexclusivePlans have been drawn up for a 4,500sqm leisure centre on the outskirts of Dundalk which would provide the likes of a ski slope and trampoline park for the town.

The proposed development would be located at Red Cow on the Old Newry Road, close to St Brigid’s Park – home of Dowdallshill GF&AC – and cost around €7.1m to build.

The company behind the proposal are Riverstown-based Handlova Ltd, who trade as Cooley Spring Water. Run by the McSloy family, they already have close connections with a major leisure centre in Belfast called We Are Vertigo.

Europe’s largest trampoline park opened last December in the Newtownbreda Factory Estate on the Cedarhurst Road with the operators Gareth and Lorna Murphy saying at the time that they were looking at other sites in Ireland. Lorna’s family members Brian McSloy Jnr and Michael McSloy are the two directors of Handlova Ltd.

The Belfast centre offers activities for all ages, including two indoor ski slopes, climbing walls, a 100ft mobile zip line, a high wire rope course, a soft play area, a spa and two cafes.

The trampoline park includes two trampoline courts, three trampoline basketball lanes, stunt pits, climbing walls, a dodge ball court, Gladiator jousting and an open trampoline area.

Inside We Are Vertigo in Belfast

Inside We Are Vertigo in Belfast

Handlova Ltd have applied to Louth County Council for outline planning permission for the leisure centre at Red Cow, which would incorporate car parking, landscaping and associated site development works, including the demolition of a non-habitable derelict cottage and outbuildings.

Plans come just three years after Innovative Leisure Systems’ plans for a €430m ski and leisure park, to be called Altitude, were rejected by An Bord Pleanala. It was to be located opposite Dundalk Stadium but would have been on a much larger scale with additional plans for the likes of a casino, cinema, bowling alley and hotel.

A separate trampoline park, Airbound, is also due to open shortly at the Northlink Retail Park on the Coes Road.

The local authority are due to decide on the matter by October 1st.

A video showcasing roughly what can be expected from the new facility, if given the go ahead, can be viewed below:

Live Register figures rise for a fourth straight month in Dundalk

00018679-314Live Register figures for Dundalk grew for the fourth straight month in July.

The latest figures from the Central Statistics Office (CSO) show that there were 6,341 people signed on in Dundalk last month, up 7.8% from March and by 2.14% on the 6,208 who were claiming dole payments in June.

On a county level there were 14,781 people signing on last month. This was also the fourth straight month of rises, with the figure up 2.03% on June. There were also increases recorded in both Ardee (-2.94%) and Drogheda (-1.69%).

These figures bucked the national trend with 2,100 people less signing on in June.

Benefit Cosmetics opening in the Marshes this Saturday

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Benefit Cosmetics are opening in the Marshes Shopping Centre this Saturday.

There will be discounts and giveaways to mark their arrival to the mall and everyone is invited along on Saturday to the opening.

Beauty brand Benefit Cosmetics was set up in San Francisco in 1976 by twins Jean and Jane Ford and are well known for products such as They’re Real, Porefessional, They’re Real Push Up Liner, Rockateur, Hoola, Hello Flawless Oxygen WOW, High beam, Sun Beam, That gal, Bad Gal Lash, Benetint, Coralista and more.

Concerns over future of WALK PEER programme

walk+logo+fbConcerns have been raised about the ending of a scheme set up to help young people with disabilities access the labour market.

The WALK PEER programme operated in Co Louth from early 2013 until April this year.

It was aimed at assisting young people with disabilities, aged between 16 and 24, to find jobs or further their education.

The programme was jointly funded by the European Social Fund and the Department of Social Protection, and was one of 14 disability activation projects established in the midlands region.

Parents of many of the participants of the scheme have expressed anger that it is not being continued or repeated and replicated elsewhere in the country.

In a statement issued to RTÉ News earlier this week, the Department of Social Protection said an evaluation of the programme was currently being carried out and would be reviewed when finalised.

The department said it had not been intended that the scheme would become an ongoing service and that funding was no longer available for the project.

Dundalk publican hits out at Government’s decision to increase minimum wage

Greg Gormley (third from left) with staff on the opening night of Russell's in April

Greg Gormley (third from left) with staff on the opening night of Russell’s in April

A local publican has hit out at the government’s decision to increase the minimum wage by 50 cent from September.

Greg Gormley, who runs the Castle Bar in Seatown and Russell’s in Park Street, told The Sunday Business Post yesterday that the timing of the increase was all wrong, pointing out that day time trade in the business was still more or less non-existent.

“There is growth in Dundalk, but it’s no where near the growth in cities like Dublin, Cork and Galway.

“Rural pubs that survived the recession are coming back at a much slower pace. When you pay out more, you have to cut somewhere else and that somewhere else is likely to be staff hours.

“If I pay minimum wage to a part-time staff member of €8.65 for 37 hours a week that works out at €320.05. The proposed 50 cent increase would put the same single wage up to €338.55 a week.

“If I have three part-time staff on the new, higher wage, it would be an increase of €2,886 a year on those wages. Paying three part-time staff that extra wage is the equivalent of paying another member 8.5 extra weeks a year, which would cover busier periods over Easter, Christmas and during the summer. That’s a seasonal job for someone.”

Gormley, who is chairman of the Louth Branch of the Vintners’ Federation of Ireland, said the likes of commercial rates, utility rates, bin charges and bank charges were also putting more pressure on small businesses that are still struggling.

“If I put a 6% increase on the price of drink in my pubs, my customers would vote with their feet and go elsewhere.

“I’ve had the same staff at the Castle Bar since I opened. If they’ve ever been short of something, I’ve always looked after them.

“Certainly, when business improves we can factor minimum wage increases in but the timing of this is totally wrong. I think staff talking about the increase amongst themselves will say ‘if someone will pay €9.15 an hour, why not just make it €10’, and that will put even more pressure on employers.

“I see it as a disaster,” he said.