Catherine and Damien Clarke

Back in Business: ‘Let’s hope the summer lasts right up until Christmas’

There was a carnival atmosphere in Navan on Monday when restaurants, coffee shops and pubs opened for outdoor service.

Glorious sunshine gave everyone hope that the much heralded “outdoor summer” had finally arrived and there was an air of excitement on the streets of the town.

The business owners were out early on Monday, setting out the tables and seating in the new parklets in Trimgate Street, Market Square and Watergate Street.

Stephen Carroll of Ode on Market Square was full of the joys of summer.

"It is very exciting, it was great putting tables out first thing in the morning. We've been serving out through a hatch for so long, with a fully stocked shop behind us and nobody ever setting foot inside the place, so it's great to see people back. There's a great energy around the town a bit of carnival atmosphere with the weather, so all us good,” he said.

It was probably the most colourful bank holiday ever seen in Navan as those of us cooped up for the long months of lockdown took advantage of the easing of restrictions and the bright sunshine to enjoy a drink or a bite to ear in convivial surroundings.

Leon Duffy of Leon's was delighted with the atmosphere in town.

“It has just been absolutely amazing to see the buzz. People floating around the town, people waiting for us to open the gates, it's just been amazing, the response has been fantastic and long may it last.

“Best of luck to all the other businesses around the town. I was just so happy that we're back open and back in action. It's great. There's a brilliant vibe around the town. There's such a buzz of people, they're everywhere. The streets are alive, the parklets are now in action, you couldn't ask for better. May the summer last until Christmas,” he said.

Blair Clinton of Chekov’s said it was great to see people back and in great form.

“The gods are with us today with the sun. “What more can we ask for? I think the town is vibrant, people are happy. It's just fantastic, great buzz, everyone's out doing the best. It's great to get a bit of normality back.

Niall Brennan of Henry Loughran's said it was amazing.

“I'm over the moon to see everyone we've missed for over a year and a half. It's a great turnout. Brilliant. Everyone's so positive, enthusiastic and just so happy to be back. It's pretty overwhelming to be honest.

“Everybody seems to be delighted and people who not stopping in for a drink are coming into have a look, everybody's happy."

Damien Clarke of P. Clarkes said it was brilliant.

"The atmosphere is brilliant. It's been a long time coming after eight months closed, we really are delighted to be back.”

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