BUSINESSES in Newport have come together to form a new association which they believe will act as one voice for the business community into the future.
The Newport Business Association (NBA) was established after a group of businesses met early in January to discuss the prospect of joining forces to be a collective voice as well as the driving force for the promotion and development of Newport as a thriving town on the Wild Atlantic Way.
There are approximately 40 businesses operating in the west Mayo town and its hinterland with up to 16 of them so far joining up with the new association. The Newport Business Association are organising the Newport Business Showcase which will take place on Sunday, February 25 in Hotel Newport as an opportunity to local businesses to showcase their own business to the public.
Darragh McGee of Clew Bay Charters and a member of the newly established committee told The Mayo News that he is optimistic that the businesses in the town will row in behind the NB.
“Newport is developing all the time but when businesses send letters to Mayo County Council suggesting things they send them individually. I have spoken to some who have sent letters and some said they were not even sent an acknowledgement. It would be better if we acted as one collective voice and act for the businesses on different matters whether it is to do with water, rates or whatever. A collective voice is the way to go,” he said.
Newport has seen a number of positive developments in recent years with the construction of the new hotel in the middle of the town as well as being in the heart of the Great Western Greenway.
However, Mr Magee said that Newport has also become a satellite town with its occupants working in Westport and Castlebar and doing their shopping in those towns and only living in Newport.
He believes that if the remaining businesses come on board, then the NBA will become a success and benefit the town and the wider community.
“People can be sceptical when a new group is being set up but if we can get all the businesses to support this I believe it will benefit everyone in the community. If the community is all working together in the same direction we can get more done than if we are doing things on our own. If we do that I believe it will be a success,” he said.
The formal launch of the Newport Business Association will take place at 4pm on the day of the Newport Business Showcase in Hotel Newport. Local businesses wishing to exhibit can contact the NBA by email - firstname.lastname@example.org, or by contacting any of the committee members (Attracta Cowley, Darragh McGee, Josephine McManamon, Liz McManamon, Seamus Walsh and Sharon Mc Govern). The participation fee is €10 and the closing date for entry is Monday, February 19.