Business prize for gallery, gift shop

A well-known art gallery and one of the country’s most iconic gift shops have been announced as joint winners of the Cork Business Association’s fourth quarterly awards.

John Bowen, chairman of the board of the Crawford Art Gallery, accepted the award on behalf of staff at a special function at the Boardwalk Bar and Grill, Lapps Quay, Cork, yesterday.

“I don’t always regard ourselves as a business but as an intrinsic part of Cork life,” Mr Bowen said as he thanked the awards’ main sponsor, Corona, and its media sponsor, the Irish Examiner.

The sculpture gallery was built in 1884 at a cost of €20,000 and is visited by more than 200,000 people every year.

Modern Irish artists are well represented and there are some old masters also in the collection.

The second award winner was presented to Finbarr Cotter, proprietor of the Newbridge Silverware shop on Oliver Plunkett St, Cork.

Last year, €120,000 was spent refurbishing the shop, which is now regarded as one of the finest business outlets in the city.

Lord Mayor of Cork, Cllr John Buttimer, described it as “a first stop shop for presents”.

“If we lost retail units like yours, the city centre would be diminished,” he told Mr Cotter.

Mr Cotter said he was very proud to accept the award on behalf of his staff. “Our product offering represents the very best range of Irish design and craftsmanship and our customers and clients appreciate this,” he added.

James O’Sullivan, chairman of the awards’ judging panel, said it would be very hard to pick an overall winner at the annual ceremony, which will be held in the Maryborough Hotel on Sat, Dec 1.

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