Clare Publicans Call Closing Time On Government Over Shannon-Heathrow Issue

From: Dunphy Public Relations
Published: Fri Oct 05 2007

Over 250 publicans in County Clare have warned of serious consequences for their businesses should the Shannon to Heathrow service be lost indefinitely.

"70 pubs have closed in the county in the past three years, with dozens more now facing a similar fate", the Clare Branch of the Vintners Federation of Ireland (VFI) warned today.

Commenting for the first time on the issue, the VFI has expressed disappointment with what it has described as the Government's unsatisfactory response to the Aer Lingus move out of Shannon

Michael Howard, Tourism Spokesperson for Clare VFI explained, "The challenges presented to local publicans should the Shannon-Heathrow service being lost will further compound the downturn in business that has been experienced in recent years. The facts indicate that pubs are closing and jobs are being lost, which is why vintners are furious with the Government's failure to use its influence in reversing the Aer Lingus decision or securing a new airline to service the route."

Mr. Howard, who is the VFI representative on the Clare Tourism Forum, said that the challenges posed to the local vintners industry by the potential loss of the strategic air link is the gravest he has seen in his 37 years as a publican.

"Publicans are already struggling to stay in business three years on from the introduction of the smoking ban and penalty points system. The loss of the long-standing Shannon to Heathrow service would only serve to make matters worse", continued Mr. Howard.

He added, "Our members are very much dependent on the tourism trade for the survival of their businesses. Tourists, particularly those of Irish extraction, coming into the Shannon Region from Heathrow represent a substantial part of the business in pubs. Any change in the accessibility from Heathrow will cause a serious downturn in employment in the pub sector and will result in putting some of our members out of business."


Notes to Editor:
- Michael Howard, Clare V.F.I. (086-8363680) is available for interview and further comment.
- For further information please contact Mark Dunphy of Dunphy Public Relations on 086-8534900 or

Mark Dunphy
Dunphy Public Relations
County Clare
00353-868534900 (Mobile)
00353-656839692 (Fax)
Company: Dunphy Public Relations
Contact Name: Dunphy Public Relations
Contact Email:
Contact Phone: 00353868534900

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