Across a recession hit Ireland shoppers are being careful with their Christmas spending.
In spite of a spate of redundancies in Cork, people there are determined to make the best of Christmas. A dispute involving Electricity Supply Board (ESB) linesmen in Cork has meant there are no Christmas lights in Patrick Street. But this has not put off shoppers and traders say the people are spend their money, albeit cautiously.
In Limerick, traders say despite hard times money is being spent, but as seen in Cork, people are spending carefully. Traders noticed that people spent less in the months leading up to December so that Christmas could be enjoyed as usual.
O’Connell Street in Limerick has a cheerful Christmas atmosphere and carries on bravely despite the attractions of out of town shopping.
Waterford traders say business is up 10% on the previous year, but customers are being choosier. One large toy retailer said newer toys and games are doing well but so too were more traditional items such as bicycles. Traders also pointed out that a mild December encouraged customers to come out and buy.
Trade in Galway is also good, with sales up on 1984 with people making most of the festive season as compensation for the recession and a bad summer. As in other parts of Ireland, people in Galway are also shopping around to find the best value for money.
An RTÉ News report broadcast on 20 December 1985. The reporter is Richard Crowley.