A family-run butchers, which has been trading in Armagh for almost a century, has announced it is to cease trading later this month.
A Flanagan & Son made the shock announcement on Saturday night, which will well and truly mark the end of an era for another city institution – and another devastating blow for Armagh high street.
The shop is prominently based in the heart of Armagh at number 1 Scotch Street and will be missed by so many.
Posting on social media, David Flanagan, who took over the day-to-day running of the business from his father, said the shop will cease trading on Saturday, November 25.
“This is a decision which has not been taken lightly, especially after 92 years of trading,” he said.
“The current financial and energy crisis, along with rates, has left us with no other choice. We have always offered high quality produce, along with value and have made the decision not to pass on these additional costs to our valued customers. We are ‘purveyors of high class meat’ and are proud, even throughout the financial crisis, to have maintained this.
“We realise this may have come as a shock to many, especially those whose unwavering loyalty brought them over the threshold of A Flanagan & Son week after week. We are so very sorry. Please accept our heartfelt thanks and appreciation.
“Many of you came here holding the hands of your parents and now come holding the hands of your children and even grandchildren. We know so many of you as friends and not as customers. Thank you.”
David also paid tribute to his “very special” father.
“There are no words to convey my love, admiration and appreciation,” he said. “Although my father is no longer serving in the shop, it is he who, despite his 82 years, day after day sees to the running of the family farm. He built up the family business and made it such a success.
“Of course, behind every great man is a great woman and here I must pay tribute to my late mother, who passed away earlier this year. She also was the backbone of the business, working alongside my father on many occasions. I am indebted to all the love, hard work and dedication my mother put into the family business. She is sorely missed.
“I would like to thank the staff, past and present, some of whom have been here many years.
“Thank you for your support and understanding at this time. We have endeavoured to tell as many face-to-face as we could before posting on Facebook. Thank you for all your lovely words. They mean so very much.”
The news was greeted with shock by many who described the loss of another family business in Armagh as “devastating”.
One woman said it was “a sad day for Armagh…a lifetime dedicated to the local community”.
Others shared memories and thanked the family for all they did for them at various stages in their lives.
As neighbours of Armagh I, we are very sorry to hear this news and we wish David and all the family the very best in the future.