DISAPPOINTMENT over the closure of two popular restaurants in Bantry’s town centre has been replaced with optimism following the relocation of The Bakehouse to what was formerly DeBarra’s Restaurant.
According to the chairman of Bantry Business Association, Diarmaid Murphy, ‘it is sad, at any time, to see a business close but locals are delighted that now at least one of these popular restaurants – The Bakehouse, which had come to the end of its lease – will continue to serve the community and provide a welcoming, but socially distancing place, for people to meet.’
The business association chairman explained that New Street is an important hub in Bantry town.
‘The loss of two restaurants would have been devastating,’ he said, ‘so it’s great to see DeBarra’s getting a new lease of life and to see New Street opening up again.’
The chairman confirmed that the delightfully quirky gift shop, Forest and Flock, will be re-opening this weekend.
He added: ‘There’s even more good news with the plan to open a music school in New Street in the next few weeks, as well as a new tenant moving into the commercial development, which was formerly Vickery’s Hotel.’
Diarmaid outlined another exciting development in New Street, the opening of The Crow’s Nest by Adrian Cronin. It is a meeting room that comes fully equipped with office facilities and wifi for people who need a temporary office or meeting space.
Also, in New Street, construction is ongoing in what was formerly McCarthy’s Bar, and Diarmaid said the fully refurbished premises is expected to open in 2021.
Responding to the government’s announcement that pubs will not reopen in this phase, the business association chairman said: ‘It is disappointing to see pubs and nightclubs classed together.
‘Rural pubs are important in local communities as a meeting place and social outlet, and there is nothing to suggest that they cannot be run on the social distancing model. It’s just downright wrong to equate a rural pub with a city nightclub – they are light years apart.’