first_imgOwner Jimmy McLaughlin is offering his pub free for six months.A businessman is giving away his pub rent-free for six months in a bid to get customers back.Up until March of this year Mary Deeney’s Bar in Muff was a thriving business.But the tenant landlord left and the bar was due to close it’s doors for a few weeks. Mary Deeneys was once a landmark bar in Inishowen.However owner Jim McLaughlin said it has been impossible to find someone to lease the bar which is located on the outskirts of the village of the Inishowen village.Now the 50 year old businessman is offering the bar and restaurant rent-free for six months to the new tenant.He told Donegal Daily “I have always been known for doing things a little differently and I’m hoping this will give someone a good start.“We have to agree a deal on a lease but the offer of six months free rent is a great bonus I think. “This was a landmark pub and there is no reason why the right person couldn’t return it to its former glory,” he said.The well-known father-of-five said the bar employed 14 people when it closed.The landmark bar has a traditional thatched roof and stone façade and is also noticeable by its 150ft steel Christmas tree which is lit up each festive season.“That’s fourteen people who could be taken off the dole if we can get the bar rented and up and running again,” added Jim.In its heyday the bar was a hive of activity. Jim was also part and parcel of the social fabric of Donegal and raised €100,000 for the Donegal Hospice through events surrounding the bar in the 1990s.At Christmas he often got celebrities including Johnny Briggs (Coronation Street’s Mike Baldwin) to turn on the Christmas lights.But, like many other landlords, Jim says the smoking ban was a huge blow to pub culture in Co Donegal.“When the smoking ban was introduced people began to go to off-licenses and realised they could get their drink much cheaper. “But the off-licenses do not have the overheads that a bar has.“The Government might have thought they were doing good but they have cost thousands of jobs and thorn the life out of a major part of Irish life,” he said.Jim added that since putting up a sign outside his bar offering it rent-free for six months, he has had a number of enquiries.He said he has yet to fix a price on a possible lease but is will to be flexible to get the bar open again with the right tenant.“I am due to meet a number of people who are prepared to give it a go.“I will give them as much support as they need. If they take a chance on me then I will take a chance on them.“Mary Deeney’s Bar was a thriving business and there’s no reason why it can’t be again.“We did great food and had a great atmosphere and that can all return.“I’m taking a chance but if someone is prepared to take a chance in return then we can make it work again,” he said.DONEGAL BUSINESSMAN OFFERS HIS PUB RENT-FREE TO BRING BACK CUSTOMERS was last modified: August 23rd, 2013 by StephenShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)Tags:Jim McLaughlinMary Deeney’s Barmuffrent freelast_img

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