Justin Leonard - Jackie Leonard & Sons

"We only had a few hours notice before opening, but we are delighted"

Ireland finally came out of lockdown on Saturday morning at 6am and although the decision was very welcome it came with only 12hrs warning. Hospitality had been on an 8pm curfew and running at 50% capacity since mid-December, it was thought that the regulations would be reviewed on 2nd Feb.

"We heard a few whispers last week, but the official announcement was made on the Friday evening news at 6pm. We only had a few hours notice before opening, but we are delighted," said Justin Leonard from Jackie Leonard & Sons.

According to Justin a lot of his customers had shut their businesses down completely as it wasn't profitable to stay open due to the limitations.

"Many of them needed to completely restock for the weekend. Saturday and Monday were extremely busy for us, we have a let up mid-week before our customers stock up for the weekend again."

No nervosity
People in Dublin don't seem to be nervous about going out as the city was buzzing on Saturday night with pubs and clubs turning people  away because they were full. "We did our very best to supply everyone this weekend, but it was a case of making do. You want a lime?, here's a lemon, you want broccoli? here's a cauliflower," laughs Justin. "Everyone got something though.

"Reopening is great for all businesses, everyone was a bit down after Christmas and New Year, but this has brought back a real feel-good factor. Traditionally January and February see a bit of a dip, then after Fruit Logistica it picks up again heading to St Patricks Day."

The Irish government has said that after two years with no St Patrick's Day celebrations they will make it a two day holiday this year as a tribute to the frontline workers, as the 17th March falls on a Thursday it may turn out to be a four day party. "Dublin has always been a big tourist destination especially for St Patricks Day and we are really hoping that tourists will start to come back as we are considered a safe destination."

People have also been told they can go back to the office to work again, while it may suit many workers and companies to do some kind of blended working the fact that people are going back into the city for work will mean a great deal for the city center businesses who have suffered greatly through lack of footfall.

"It is time for us to start living again, we can start planning properly without fear of another lockdown around the corner."

For more information:
Justin Leonard
Jackie Leonard & Sons Limited 
Tel: +353 1 873 3055
Mob: +353 86 867 4760

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