Goalpost pub boasts huge footfall thanks to Ballymaloe neighbors

An east Cork bar business, by the coast in pretty Shanagarry, has the world washing up at its counter, thanks to the nearby presence of the renowned Ballymaloe House, the Ballymaloe Cookery School, and the former Stephen Pearce Emporium, now a craft and design centre with cafe, by Kilkenny Design.

And, last weekend, many thousands more passed through thanks to the 2016 Ballymaloe LitFest, as the village’s reputation for tourism and top sustenance gains further traction.

New to market is Shanagarry’s only pub, the Goalpost, and it’s only become available because the owners Margaret and Seamus Crowley are set to retire.

When they bought it 17 years ago, Seamus had been working as an agricultural contractor but wanted to change for health reasons.

“We knew nothing about the business, and had no previous experience, but a CERT course helped set us up,” says Margaret Crowley.

Since then, the neighbouring Ballymaloe Cookery School has grown up almost alongside the Goalpost, and now runs three, 12-week cookery class sessions each year.

It has helped dozens, if not hundreds, to take the step into guesthouse, cafe, restaurant and markets stall business set-ups and ownership.

Bars and gastro-pubs too, more than likely, got a start with that cookery school, and its students have been frequent visitors at this Irish pub exemplar.

Who’ll now rise to the top to take on the Goalpost pub now that the Crowleys are selling for entirely practical reasons of retirement?

The business and premises is for sale now with veteran bar seller Maurice Cohalan of Cohalan Downing, who says: “It’s refreshing to be selling a pub for all the ‘right’ reasons, after recent years of bank and distressed business sales.”

He describes it as “a lovely pub of great character and considerable charm, and it does a very good food business, especially during the summer months, with fish landed up at Ballycotton.”

The Goalpost’s right next door to the local GAA club and the Kilkenny Store; it has just over 2,000 sq ft at ground, with basement cellar with hoist, plus front and side bars, dining room and commercial kitchen.

Upstairs there’s a further 1,737 sq ft with five bedrooms, two of them en suite, with living room, bathroom, and yet another kitchen.

The knives may well be sharpened now too for a cut at this bar’s open goal and business opportunity.

Details: Cohalan Downing, 021-4277717


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