Crawfordsburn village may lose only shop

The owner of the only shop and petrol station in Crawfordsburn village, County Down says he is being forced to sell up according to the Federation of Small Businesses.

FSB member John McCormick has run the Ballyrobert Road shop and service station since 1986 and it has been in the McCormick family for over 50 years.

In the past four years they have seen a drop of 60% in petrol sales and 10% in grocery sales. Mr McCormick has said this has been caused by a shift in peoples’ shopping habits, the arrival of multi-national supermarkets and the impact of a petrol price war between two of them in Bangor two years ago.

John McCormick said: “Two thirds of my customers have voted with their wallet and gone elsewhere, so I am prepared to do the same.

“There is no other option and it’s a pity. My father started the business in 1955 and I would love to hand it over to one of my children – I have four children and one of my daughters is keen to run it, but I don’t see how there will be any business left. It’s pretty grim.”

The mounting pressures of running the business are beginning to take a toll on Mr McCormick’s health and can see no other option than to sell up.

Recently Mr McCormick estimated that the business lost £1000 trading when the Roads Service closed the road outside the service station on a Sunday morning to cut hedges.

Wilfred Mitchell, FSB Policy Chairman said: “The situation Mr McCormick at Crawfordsburn Service station finds himself in is typical of the predicament many small retailers are finding themselves in and steps need to be taken to help protect and preserve similar small enterprises.”


Related Northern Ireland News Stories
Click here for the latest headlines.

23 August 2019
Tutoring Service Launched For GCSE Students
As students across Northern Ireland receive their GCSE results, Belfast City Council has launched a new programme to help young people make the grade in English and Maths. Free tutoring sessions will be delivered outside of school hours throughout the year and during holiday periods.
13 August 2019
NIAS Operating With Reduced Crews
The Northern Ireland Ambulance Service operated with major staff shortages for a fourth consecutive night on Monday 12 August. Ambulance crews were revealed to have been down 20 crews over the weekend, roughly a quarter of its normal workforce, while operations continued last night with around 12 crews less than normal.
08 August 2019
Impact Of A&E Visits On Cancer Patients Highlighted
Cancer patients with at least one emergency admission in 2015 were twice as likely to die in hospital, a report studying those in their last year of life has found.
09 August 2019
Other News In Brief
Coleraine Woman Convicted Of £11k Benefit Fraud A Coleraine woman has been convicted of benefit fraud after she claimed over £11,000 she was not entitled to. Yvonne Holmes, aged 50, of The Crescent, Coleraine was found to have claimed Employment and Support Allowance and Housing Benefit totalling £11,163, while failing to declare employment.
18 February 2009
Survey Says Downturn Hitting 80% Of Irish Businesses
The economic downturn has had an adverse impact on four out of five businesses across the island of Ireland. That is the stark finding from an extensive survey of 1,000 companies, north and south of the border commissioned by trade and business development body InterTradeIreland.