An extra special gift for a special lady

Women’s Little Christmas Fashion Lunch in aid of Breakthrough Cancer Research is the ultimate pampering day out, and you’ll also support a very worthwhile cause.

What can you get for the lady in your life who really deserves something special? For a truly thoughtful treat, book tickets to a unique Women’s Little Christmas event!

The ‘Ladies Lunch and Fashion Showcase’ in aid of Breakthrough Cancer Research, takes place on Sunday 6th January from 12-5pm in the luxurious surroundings of the Cork International Hotel.

Now in its 8th year, the event offers an exclusive afternoon of fashion, glamour and pampering.  On arrival lucky guests will be treated to a drinks reception with some pampering treats, before being dazzled by a fashion showcase with top stylist Dee Kelly Morgan. The MC on the day will be popular local influencer Helen Queally Murphy, aka @DailyDivaDiary.

A delicious three course meal will follow with wine, tea and coffee, and then the stunningly talented tenor Ryan Morgan will take to the stage with live music, while guests sit back and relax with friends or peruse some of the fabulous shopping stalls available. There’s also a best dressed lady competition, goody bags, a fantastic raffle and much, much more.

Orla Dolan, Director of Fundraising with Breakthrough Cancer Research, said, “Nollaig na mBan or Women’s Little Christmas is a fabulous excuse to catch up with the ladies in your life after a hectic Christmas, and this event is always a favourite in our fundraising calendar.  All proceeds raised on the day will support critical ongoing research into new cutting edge treatments for cancer patients, particularly those with difficult to treat cancers. We have already had a great deal of success with new treatments, thanks to the generosity of the people in Cork.”

Breakthrough Cancer Research also has a shop n drop facility on Cook St for shoppers over the Christmas season.

Breakthrough Cancer Research is leading the way with research into cancers with poor prognosis such as ovarian, pancreatic and oesophageal.  Having already progressed seven treatments from the laboratory to clinical trial, they work closely with multiple hospitals in Cork to ensure their research is responding to the needs of patients with cancers that do not respond to conventional therapies.

Tickets are priced at €55 and usually sell out in record time, so book now to avoid disappointment. To purchase your ticket, call Jesse at Breakthrough Cancer Research on 021 4226655, or


For further information, contact

Niamh Murphy or Clair Phillips, ETC


10 Secret Santa gift ideas available in Cork City

We’ve all been there. It’s Christmas ‘crunch time’ and stress levels are rising as even the most organised Christmas shoppers among us are racking our brains for last minute Secret Santa gift ideas for that colleague, family member or friend we have no idea how to gift!


Thankfully there’s an abundance of great gifts available in Cork City Centre across the city’s unique range of independent shops and market trade stalls, as well as the central high street stores.


And to help those of you still struggling, we’ve compiled a selection of Secret Santa gifts priced under €50, with a little help from Cork Business Association and Cork City Council who have just launched a new @CorkCityShopping social media channel promoting shopping, dining and entertainment in Cork City.


Don’t forget, there’s also free parking in the Paul Street and North Main Street car parks on Thursdays, Fridays and
Saturdays until January 12 when you enter the car parks after 5pm, plus extended park and ride services and additional late-night buses, so get your Secret Santa selves in to the city centre and get shopping!


Gifts under €50

For Him –

What do you get for the guy who loves video games and board games? Fortnite Monopoly! This limited edition of Monopoly is inspired by the popular Fortnite video game. Players claim locations, battle their opponents, and avoid the Storm to survive; the last player standing wins. A sure-fire Secret Santa win, for him.

Available in Game Stop on Patrick Street. Price €29.99



For Her –

It would be hard to visit ethical, Irish craft and design store Wild Design without finding something uniquely beautiful. We love these Lil’ Moon necklaces, hand crafted by the award-winning Danu Designer Ceramics. Porcelain half-moons on a gold fill chain.

Available in Wild Design, Paul Street Shopping Centre. Cost: €45



For the history / book lover –

Everyone loves a hero, and the greatest heroes of them all were the ancient Greeks.
Stephen Fry's ‘Heroes’ is a blistering retelling of the Greek myths and legends and the perfect gift for history fans, young and old alike.

Available in Vibes and Scribes on Lavitt’s Quay. Price €12.99


For all Corkonians –

The perfect gift for all the family, a loved one abroad or someone coming home to Cork for Christmas. All you need is scissors and glue to make these creative Build Your Own Tiny Cork City Collectible 3D Models inspired by buildings around Cork City, including the Shandon clock tower, replete with a golden fishy! They’re so simple, even adults can make them.

Available in the Crawford Art Gallery gift shop on Emmett’s Place. Price: €15.00


For the retro Fashionista –

Shopping for someone who rocks a retro sense of style? Then these chic woollen winter sweaters will keep even the coolest fashionista warm this Christmas. His and her vintage knits available in a range of designs, some even come with a party sparkle!

Available in Records and Relics on Lancaster Quay. Price €20 each or 3 for 2.



For the candle lover –

Light up someone’s life with a colourful tea light glow globe this Christmas. Suitable for use throughout the year! Cheap and cheerful.

Available from Candle Mania on Oliver Plunkett Street. Price: €12.95


For the Game of Thrones Fan –

All Lannisters love a good gift and what could be better than a Game of Thrones gift set complete with a mug, coaster and key chain bearing the Lannister coat of arms? Perfect for Game of Thrones fans. Available from Penney’s on Patrick Street. Price €7.50.


For the girl who likes to sparkle –

Keep a teen or twenty-something warm, happy and shiny both inside and out this Christmas with a Hello Gorgeous Pom Pom Hat and / or scarf. The perfect festive gift combination.

Available from Oasis on Patrick Street. Price: Hat €21 and matching scarf €33


For the ethical recycler –

You can’t go wrong with this handy hessian bottle carry bag. Made from strong, hessian sack material, sturdy in design with six separate bottle compartments. Your recipient will look good as well as displaying their environmental awareness  down at the recycling bank!

Available from My Goodness in the English Market. Price €5.00


For the local Cork food fan –

Edible gifts are always appreciated so if you’re stuck in a jam (ahem!) for a last-minute gift idea, why not pick up a Big Red Hen homemade jam gift box set in The English Market? Flavours include traditional strawberry, Irish Apple Butter and Chilli Jelly. Delish!

Available from The Roughty in the English Market. Price €15.00


For more inspiration on fantastic gift ideas available in Cork City Centre, check out @CorkCityShopping on Facebook and Instagram and @corkshopping on Twitter, in Association with Cork Business Association.

Over 120 Young People from all over Cork create Magic Fairy Garden at GLOW

Presented by Cork City Council, Glow, A Cork Christmas Celebration returns this weekend Friday December 14th to Sunday December 16th. As part of GLOW, a stunning magic Fairy Garden in Bishop Lucey Park has been created by a large group of young people from different youth services all over Cork.

Anton Cullen from Triangle Productions Ltd, the company which has illuminated Bishop Lucey Park this year, commissioned Art Tutors Davy Dummigan and Fiona Desmond to work with young people from local youth projects in Cork City, with a view to creating the unique feature in Bishop Lucey Park as part of GLOW.


Over 120 young people from different youth services took part in the project. These included The Hut in Gurranabraher - run by Youth Work Ireland; The Good Shepherd Services Cork, and Foróige Youth Projects in Farranree, Bishopstown, and Togher. Facilitated by Davy and Fiona, the young people have created a very charming fairy village, whose centrepiece is Cork’s iconic Shandon Bells.


The main purpose of ‘The Magic Fairy Garden’ is to highlight the great work that tutors from Cork Education and Training Board (ETB) facilitate throughout the city, as well as highlighting the resources provided by the Youth Centres themselves on a local level. It is hoped to develop this community-based approach within other local festivals and events in the future.

Bishop Lucey Park will be open this Friday, Saturday and Sunday (4.30pm to 8.30pm) and there is still time for children to post their letters to Santa and to meet Padaí the Postman in the Park.


The Christmas Market is also open from 12noon to 8.30pm this weekend, and the 30-meter Ferris Wheel is open from 12noon to 9pm, and several schools will sing festive songs on the Grand Parade on Friday. These include Coláiste Choilm and, Gaelcholáiste Choilm from Ballincollig, St Brendan’s National School,the Glen and Scoil Mhuire Fatima from North Monastery Road.


On Saturday, from 12pm to 8pm, choirs including Carrigaline Gospel Choir, Voices of Cork Choir, Cork Operatic Society, Butter Exchange Brass and Reed Band and UCC Surgeon Noonan Society will all perform. Several musical performances will also take place on the Grand Parade on Sunday featuring Suzuki Violins, Rebel Brass, Ballyphehane Youth Project, Mahon Community Concert Band and Mahon Community Rock and Pop Hub.


Glow runs every weekend until December 16th. It also runs from Thursday December 20th to Saturday December 22nd. See



Evening Echo, Cork’s 96FM and C103 are the media sponsors of GLOW.


For further information contact Eimear O’Brien PR

086 8900364/

GLOW remains Green in 2018

Presented by Cork City Council, Glow, A Cork Christmas Celebration returns this weekend and sees Bishop Lucey Park and the Grand Parade transformed into a hive of activity with choirs, food traders, and GLOW’s Green elves. The much-loved Ferris Wheel and the Christmas Markets open on Friday at 12noon while Bishop Lucey Park opens at 4.30pm.

The Greening of GLOW continues this year with all market traders using only 100% compostable packaging for their foodstuffs. The Market features a wide variety of traders including Sultan Hand Fatima Middle Eastern Cuisine, Volcano’s Woodfired Pizzas, Wok n Roll, Dinky Donuts Bad Boys BBQ, Paradise Crepes, Canard Sauvage and O’Conaill’s Chocolate.


The Greening of GLOW began two years ago for the 2016 festival, and successfully diverted 50% of waste produced on-site from landfill towards more sustainable practices of recycling and composting.  Encouraged by this success, and in consideration of the types of waste being produced at the festival, GLOW took a giant leap in 2017 and became a ZERO landfill festival with all waste produced on site either being recycled or composted.


GLOW continues to be a zero-landfill festival in 2018 – the only bins available to visitors are compost or recycling. In the first weekend of GLOW, 0.88 tonnes of waste were diverted from landfill. This breaks down into 420kg of recyclable waste and 460kg of compostable waste. This weekend, friendly Green Elves will be on the Grand Parade to help members of the public make the right bin choice and to answer any questions that people might have about the initiative.


See for full programme of events.



For further information contact Eimear O’Brien PR/ 086 8900364/

Flood scheme “a sticky plaster solution”.

Plans to create a permanent flood relief scheme for businesses affected by flooding have been criticised by the head of Cork Business Association.


It comes after cabinet approved a plan to create a permanent flood relief scheme for small businesses and community organisations this week.


The scheme will see payments of up to €5,000 for uninsured businesses and organisations whose premises are damaged by flooding.


Successful applicants to the scheme will receive a ‘quick’ payment of up to €5,000, with more serious cases to be assessed for further payment of up to €15,000.


Responding this week, Chief Executive of Cork Business Association Lawrence Owens criticised the scheme as a “sticky plaster solution” that failed to address the main issues for businesses in flood-prone areas. “My concern is that this is not dealing with the core issues,” he said.


“The Office of Public Works (OPW) has put in flood defences around the country, which has kept 20,000 businesses protected with a one in 100 year flood risk. We saw the success of it here in 2015, for example with Fermoy and Clonmel, who were protected during bad flooding, so it works.


“The OPW has a very good track record and a high standard of work, but at the moment in Cork we are totally exposed and many don’t have flood insurance.”


Mr Owens said insurance companies were “avoiding the issue” by not insuring businesses located in areas secured with flood defences. He cited the Flood Insurance Bill 2016 currently going through the Houses of the Oireachtas, which would prevent insurance companies from discriminating against home and business owners in low risk areas.


“Insurance agencies must come back to areas and offer businesses insurance at a reasonable rate,” he said.


“Small businesses who are protected from flooding should not be refused insurance just because they are from an area which has been flooded before.


“The message is simple – put in flood defences, then give people a good offer on insurance,” he said.


In November 2009 parts of Cork were left devastated by extreme flooding, which caused millions worth of damage to businesses and households.


The OPW’s controversial €6 million flood defence plan for Morrison’s Island in the city, part of its wider €140 million Lower Lee Flood Relief Scheme, was temporarily halted last month after a European Court ruling.


Fianna Fáil TD Margaret Murphy O’Mahony, whose native Bandon has been a victim of three severe floods in the last decade, said she supported the project but said it was “in no way compensation” for business in secure areas who were unable to obtain insurance.


“This does not take from the fact many uninsured businesses have had their properties massively devalued, owners who can’t retire or are forced to stay on,” the Cork South-West TD said.


“It is also a disincentive to those who want to set up in the town, who will take their ideas and jobs elsewhere.”



Source: Ryan O'Neill, Cork Independent 

‘Tis the season to shop, dine and entertain in Cork City!

Cork Business Association and Cork City Council invest in a Christmas marketing campaign to drive footfall to the city centre

FREE Parking, Shop ‘n’ Drop Service, new social media channels and more!

Nothing says Christmas quite like Cork City Centre and in an effort to spread the good word, Cork Business Association and Cork City Council have launched a Christmas shopping marketing campaign to drive footfall into the unique city centre and boost trade throughout the festive season.


The second city has atmosphere on tap, from its fabulous festive lighting and carol singing on Patrick Street, to the S.H.A.R.E crib and the world-famous English Market. If it’s good enough for Queen Elizabeth and Prince Charles, it’s good enough for us to pick up our turkey, ham and traditional spiced beef!


The multifaceted marketing campaign aims to convey the message that consumers can combine Christmas shopping in the city centre with a visit to GLOW – Cork’s festive carnival with street markets, a winter wonderland and entertainment including a giant Ferris wheel on the Grand Parade – or sample the city’s fantastic array of restaurants and cafes or perhaps catch a panto or show.


And to ensure it’s as easy as possible to access the city centre, the good people at Cork Business Association and Cork City Council have introduced FREE parking from 5pm in Paul Street and North Main Street car parks every Thursday, Friday and Saturday until January 12th, meaning there will be 1,000 free car parking spaces for shoppers in Cork City centre for three nights per week for almost two months!


Not only that, but there will also be increased park and ride services, along with additional late-night buses, and a doubling of frequency on the 220 route between Ballincollig and Carrigaline, making the city more accessible than ever throughout the busy Christmas period.


Also just begun is a new Shop ‘n’ Drop valet service on 1-2 Cook Street (previously Specsavers), in aid of Breakthrough Cancer Research.  It aims to encourage shoppers to enjoy the city by allowing them to drop off their bags and go for a drink or a meal, hassle-free. It is open Mondays to Saturdays 11a.m. to 7p.m.and on Sundays from 12pm to 5p.m. until December 23rd


Other marketing activities that have been launched as part of the initiative include a PR campaign, engaging with fashion and gifting media, photo and video shoots with city centre retailers and hospitality tradespeople, influencer engagement, radio, print and online advertising, and the launch of social media sites.


The new Cork Business Association and Cork City Council backed social media platform, which includes Cork City Shopping channels on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, aims to promote shopping in the city centre, highlighting the city’s fantastic range of boutiques, high street stores, quirky shops and quality bars and eateries that make Cork City Centre so unique.


All Cork city retailers are being encouraged to follow the Cork City Shopping social media channels and to share their content with the site administrators in an effort to attract shoppers from the Cork surrounds and further afield. The social media shopping platform also offers a fantastic opportunity for retailers in the city to work together to promote how unique the shopping experience is in Cork City Centre and how the atmosphere really is second to none.


CEO of Cork Business Association, Lawrence Owens, commented:

“Our mission at Cork Business Association is to help businesses work together and be in a position to meet their customers’ everchanging needs, not just in terms of products, but in how their customers want to shop and when they wish to shop.

“Cork Business Association and Cork City Council are doing everything we can to encourage people to come in to the city centre to shop, enjoy our fantastic local food, catch a show and savour the incredible festive atmosphere that makes the city so unique.”