About 60 people, the vast majority of them former employees of Youghal Carpets, congregated at the Aldi entrance hall to witness the unveiling of a permanent photographic monument to the legendary factory. The store now occupies the site of the former plant, writes Christy Parker.
The seven photographs represent different departments of the factory, which was founded by John Murray and B.L.J. O’Brien in 1954 and which provided direct employment for almost 1,000 people at its peak in the 1970’s before it closed in 1984. The photos may, in years to come, be rotated with replacements.
The pictures also recognise Couristan Carpets which succeeded Youghal Carpets until it too closed in 2006, while a short written summary of the factories is also framed alongside them.
The gathering was addressed by Tom Donnelly, who worked in various capacities throughout Youghal Carpets existence. Mr Donnelly delivered a brief outline of the carpet industry in the town. Others to address the attendance included Tommy Curtin, Aldi Youghal store manager Michael Walsh and special guest Cllr Mary Linehan-Foley.
The commemoration was organised by a group of former employees, with Aldi happy to accommodate their request. A statement from Mr. Walsh reflects the company’s grasp of history and its goodwill and understanding towards the townspeople for whom the carpet industry may be gone, but who will forever know that it provided not just a living wage but in very many cases homes, families and priceless memories as well.
Read the full article inside the latest issue of Youghal News.