Colum Coomey reports on the sudden closure of renowned Limerick firm
THE property crash and a crowded marketplace have lead to the closure of Clancy Electrical, one of Limerick’s oldest family businesses.
It was sad day for the Clancy family as they pulled down the shutters at their Parkway Roundabout outlet on Friday last, after 80 years in business.
“Unfortunately, there were a lot of houses built that haven’t been sold. Therefore, there is less demand for kitchen fit-outs, domestic appliances and TVs.
“There were just too many players in the market to survive”, said Gerry Clancy Jr., recalling they had moved from their O’Connell Street base to the Parkway Roundabout a few years ago.
Eight jobs will be lost at the Parkway unit. Upwards of 40 were employed when they were trading in the city centre at their peak in 2006.
Despite all of their efforts to continue trading, the business became unsustainable.
“We always fought and competed pricewise, and tried to twist every sort of which way possible to survive.
“When the economic crisis started people became extremely price conscious and were travelling to Cork and Dublin to save a few euro”.
When his grandfather started trading on O’Connell Street in 1930, there was a very different business environment.
“He was an electrician by trade and he bought a premises on O’Connell Street in 1930 to sell electrical goods”, said the former owner.
After 80 years of trading in Limerick, the company had built up a loyal customer base.
“We had fantastic customers…we had five generations of one family buying from the store.
“When I was pulling down the shutters on Friday a lady came in and when I told her we were closing, she was more shocked than me,” an emotional Gerry told the Limerick Post.
He thanked all of those who had called with messages of support.
“People have been reminiscing with me about the shop.
“All of the real characters came in and one man told me over the weekend that his father trained with my grandfather.
“It was part of Limerick’s heritage and one of the old family stores associated with the city of Limerick”.
The Clancy’s have fond memories of their staff over the years, and Gerry said they are now working through to get them sorted out.
“Some former employees had earlier retired after 40 years working with the company.
“Eddie Scales who was working with us until we closed, was with us for 35 years”.
All customer guarantees and warranties will be honoured by the manufacturers.