It’s the most wonderful time of the year, or at least it would be for local traders under normal circumstances.
Despite the challenges, though, Fermanagh businesses have been working hard to make it easier and safer than ever for locals to support their own this Christmas.
One such local business is KB Music in Enniskillen. Run by Kevin Burns, the business had already been widening its audience using online outlets for the past few years, meaning it was well prepared for the first pandemic hit. And while the lockdowns may have been a blow to business, “it wasn’t all doom and gloom”, Kevin told the Herald.
“A lot of my custom is gone. The border counties would have been big business for me, and that is more or less gone, especially since the recent lockdown in the South,” he said. “But people have also been turning to music, they have more time on their hands. “It’s definitely not Christmas as normal, though, it’s not November in a normal year, but it was getting hard anyway every year.”
That being said, Kevin explained that the KB Music’s Facebook page and online presence on sites such as Ebay and Done Deal was already established before the first lockdown, which meant he has been able to take telephone orders and deliver locally himself. On top of that, the shop itself is fully Covid ready, with sanitising and social distancing measures in place, making music lovers’ shopping experience as safe as it possibly can be.
As for supporting local this Christmas, Kevin urged any Fermanagh shoppers considering buying from the giant online retailers to consider a retailer closer to home, where you have a point of contact if anything goes wrong.
“What I would say is, give me a bell before you hit the button, before you click to buy. Sometimes I can be keener,” he said, pointing out some may mistakenly believe the larger outlets would have better deals. Kevin also noted there was a danger of falling for genuine looking fakes online: “If it seems too good to be true it probably is.”
To read more.. Subscribe to current edition
Receive quality journalism wherever you are, on any device. Keep up to date from the comfort of your own home with a digital subscription.
Any time | Any place | Anywhere