LOCAL NEWS

Local TD Declan Breathnach is asking people to shop local this Christmas and to support local business owners.

With Christmas shopping now in full flow, the Fianna Fáil deputy outlined why spending locally can benefit the area as a whole.

“With Black Friday and Cyber Monday sales now out of the way, retailers are preparing themselves for the hectic pre-Christmas shopping season,” Deputy Breathnach said.

We know that Irish households are set to spend an estimated €2,700 each this Christmas and I would hope that this money is kept within the local economy in so far as possible. We are fortunate in Co Louth that we are awash with excellent local producers, from food and drink, to handcrafts. Dundalk Chamber of Commerce, Shop Local Gift Vouchers have been a huge success in stopping the flow of money from the town.

“I understand the allure of online shopping, that it can be more convenient or in some cases cheaper, but ultimately it is having a seriously detrimental effect on our local shop owners, producers and craftspeople.

“I would hate to see the hustle and bustle of Christmas lost in our towns – it’s this atmosphere that so many people look forward to every year.  People who come into their local town to shop often end up meeting up with friends and family for a cup of coffee or a drink; it’s a social occasion as much as it is a shopping outing.

“I have long spoken of the issue of cross-border smuggling and the adverse impact it has on communities in Louth. Small shops are the lifeblood of local communities in towns and villages and we need to do more to help protect them from the knock on-effect of smuggling.

“The economy may be recovering but local traders and enterprises still need us to support them and Christmas provides the perfect opportunity for us to do that,” concluded Deputy Breathnach.