Austins: Independent Traders Association says closure is ‘big loss’

Austins was founded in 1830 and was the world's oldest independent department store.
Austins was founded in 1830 and was the world's oldest independent department store.
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The Northern Ireland Independent Retail Trade Association (NIIRTA) has described the closure of Austins in Derry as dreadful news for the City and a big loss to the independent retail sector.

NIIRTA Chief Executive Glyn Roberts said: “This is truly dreadful news, that one of oldest independent retailers in Europe is to close its doors after 186 years of trading in Londonderry.”

“This is not just a loss for Derry, but to Northern Ireland’s independent retail sector as whole.”

“Austins was very much a destination retailer for Derry City Centre and its closure will result in less footfall for the surrounding local traders. Our thoughts are with the fifty three Austins staff and their families at this difficult time”

“It underlines the need for the NI Executive and Derry & Strabane Council to have a co-ordinated strategy to address the many challenges facing Londonderry City Centre and its traders,” Mr Roberts said.