Ballymahon shop extensively damaged by fire
by Denise Canavan
The town of Ballymahon was in shock on Tuesday evening last after the longstanding and much loved local business premises "The Country Shop" was extensively damaged by fire.
The fire was reported shortly after 5pm on Tuesday and was attended by three units of the Fire Brigade as well as local Gardai. Members of the fire brigade were present at the premises until approximately 11pm when the blaze was finally brought under control. Gardai preserved the scene overnight for technical examination due to take place on Wednesday.
It is believed that the fire started at the rear of the building, in the store, but the full extent of the damage is not yet known. No-one was injured in the incident. Locals reported seeing large amounts of smoke pouring out of the front entrance of the shop but flames were not visible from the main street of the town.
The shop which is owned and operated by well known Ballymahon businessman Michael Conlon has been known as "The Country Shop" since 1959 and indeed that name is synonymous with trade on the main street of the town.
However, the location has hosted retail businesses dating back further; older residents may remember the premises as "Kellogg's" and "Rice's Butchers" before that. It is estimated that the location has been a business premises in Ballymahon for at least 65 years.
"The Country Shop" is currently operated under the "Daybreak" supermarket chain.