Lowry Calls For Government Support To Hospitality Sector

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The Hospitality sector is in urgent need of Government support according to Tipperary TD Michael Lowry.

The matter was raised in the Dáil with the TD noting the high number of restaurants closing recently.

Government decisions had unintended consequences and if not revisited the shutters will fall on many more cafes, restaurants shops and vital community hubs according to Deputy Lowry.

Restaurants and cafes are suffering from a huge increase in operational costs, combined with the soaring cost of living impacting on consumer spending.

Lowry cited higher food prices, increased energy prices, rising insurance costs, automatic pension enrollment, raised PRSI contributions and additional Bank Holidays payments.

Further cost increases due to the Minimum Wage increase and the increase in the number of days for paid sick leave entitlement are compounded by the VAT rate increase from 9% to 13.5% in September 2023.

In response, Minister of State, Neal Richmond, says the Government is looking at all options as regards costs and supports and adds that the Government wants to ensure that it keeps viable businesses open.

The community in Tipperary town and it’s hinterland is expressing shock, sadness and anger at news of the impending closure of Flanagan’s Lane in Tipperary town.

The family owned business is to close on January 26th with the loss of 18 full and part time positions.

There has been an outpouring of comments from business operators in hospitality, in Tipperary town and especially from customers – here is a flavour of the messages –

We are very sorry to hear this, we know how hard this kind of work is, and the blood sweat and tears, you and Gary have put into it. Mind yourselves and take a bit of time if you can. Best wishes to you and all your lovely staff….xx French Quarter Cafe

Government is failing us Rates, electricity, VAT & wage increase, the new recycling tax, new pension scheme, waste price increase, soaring cost of food & drinks products, rising insurance, staff sick day pay scheme, just to name a few! Small businesses just can’t keep up.Such a huge loss for the town, impacts other businesses and tourism too! Hope that something is done soon! – Oh Sugar Coffee & Bakehouse

Very sorry to hear of this news. A major blow for the town & surrounding areasWishing Gary , Niamh and all there staff the very best of luck in the future.- MJ Buckley Junction Gastro Pub

I’m very sorry to hear of the impending closure of Flanagan’s, especially for the owners, hard working staff & the loyal customers. I have worked in the hospitality industry for 43 years & have never known it to be so difficult to make it work. The government have absolutely destroyed so many small/ medium sized businesses who like Flanagans are a vital cog in the local community. Running costs are true the roof, but the final nail was the Vat increase. I can only wish the proprietors & staff the very best of luck in the future, Willie – Pallas Bar and Bistro Niamh and Gary, am very sorry to hear this. I know first-hand how difficult it is to run a small hospitality business. Mind yourselves and thinking of you and all your lovely staff.- Cllr Anne Marie RyanTerrible to see. But we will see more of this unless the government take meaningful action to support small businesses. And it’s small towns like Tipperary that will suffer the most unfortunately – Cllr Tony Black So sorry to hear this Niamh, Gary and all the lovely staff who always worked so hard to keep this Business going. Going to miss ye guys all the best for the future. – Eyesight Opticians All of us at Arra are so sad!!! – Arra Vets We are devastated to hear this. What a fantastic place to eat it was with great food and wonderful staff. We are very sorry, best wishes for the future Niamh and staff. Such a loss to the town. – Crosses Pharmacy Absolutely heartbreaking news!!!You both worked so hard and created such a lovely venue for people to eat, meet & greet. Every good wish for the future and to your incredible staff.Such sad news for you both Niamh & Gary & Tipperary Town.Best Wishes to everyone involved – Joe Whelan’s So sorry to hear this sad news. Wishing yourselves and the staff the very best for the future, you will all be sadly missed in the town – Tipperary Post OfficeSuch awful news hate seeing another business close in Tipp town. Such gorgeous food and great staff . Best wishes to you all in the future. Very sad news – Merlin MagicAbsolutely devastated to hear this news. You were the heart of the town and it will be a tremendous loss for everyone in this town. Thank you to Niamh, Caroline, Sylvia and all the staff for always providing a first class service always with a friendly smile and kind words. Best of luck to you all in the future – Lir Beauty Clinic And just a sample of the messages from customers -Such a beautiful restaurant with lovely staff and easy jazz music in the background. The decor is fabulous and the surroundings pristine. Always bustling with satisfied customers. If this has to close, there’s not much hope left for the other small businesses left in Tipp town.So sorry to hear this news. We loved our visits to Flanagan’s and the lovely times we had there. Always a pleasure to eat and chat. Every good wish to ye all. Everything was always so lovely thereI’m not from Tipperary but I often dropped in for a very decent coffee and snack when passing. This is very sad news indeed. Best wishes for the future.So sorry to hear this. Always great food and great staff. A big loss for the town.So sorry to hear this ye will be greatly missed.Very sorry to hear this. A terrible loss to the town. Always loved the omelets.