True cost of lockdowns on Irish towns is laid bare in report

Local businesses struggle to survive as data reveals steep rise in commercial vacancy rates

Shops on Dublin's Grafton Street were forced to close by the pandemic. Photo: Leon Farrell/

Gabrielle Monaghan

The west Clare heritage town of Kilrush is brimming with potential. Frances Street – Ireland’s second-widest street after O’Connell Street in Dublin – is lined with three-storey 19th-century merchant houses. During the summer, the 120-berth marina has an inflatable aqua park for kids and a boat service running to the monastic settlement on nearby Scattery Island.

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