Fitzpatrick’s Shop

Fitzpatrick's Foodstore, Glounthaune, Co. Cork. | Tel: 021 4353299 | Follow us on Facebook

Our History

Where it all began.....

Fitzpatrick’s Shop Fitzpatrick’s Shop Fitzpatrick’s Shop

Fitzpatrick's Shop was initially built as a dwelling house for Jeremiah & Kate O' Connell in the 1930's. A front room in the house served as a small shop from where they sold food, hardware and fuel. In 1939 when the war broke out Jeremiah went to England as a war correspondent and Kate moved to Ballincollig to live with her sister thereby putting the house up for rent.

In 1941 Margaret Fitzpatrick from Kinsale originally, but then living in Dublin was visiting her sister Kitty who was at the time a teacher in Belvelly Cobh. Returning on the train from Cobh to Cork she observed the small shop with the “FOR RENT” sign in the window. Anxious to return to her native city, and already having the experience of running a business in Dublin – Margaret decided to rent the premises and so in 1942 the shop re-opened under the Fitzpatrick name. Those were the war days of rationing, but Margaret transferred a sizeable quantity of supplies from Dublin and even then the shop began to develop the reputation as having “everything”.

In 1967 her son William Fitzpatrick who was then running the business purchased the premises from Kate O' Connell's nephew for the pricely sum of £750 (approx €952!!) and the solicitor account for that transaction being £37. At this stage the second front room had been added to the shop and incorporated a library service and a public phone. One could purchase not only foodstuffs but also boots/shoes, candles, paraffin oil, items of clothing, and many other living necessities of the day. This was long before the days ofsupermarkets as we now know them. All transactions were done over the high counter; the customer was heralded by the ringing of the front door bell.

Sadly William Fitzpatrick died in 1971 at the relatively young age of 54, and left his wife Nora with seven young children to carry on the business. Nora co-incidently also came from a “local” shop in Little Island namely Pennys of Ballyverry. As her eldest child was only 16 years old, it was due to Nora's determination and hard work that the business continued to survive. That was no easy feat as those were times when retail was fast changing from the counter style business to self service as we know it today.

It was not until 1976 that their daughter Geraldine, on her return from teacher training in Carysfort Dublin, took over the running of the business. It was she with her husband Martin & their six children who extended the business to what it is today. 65 years on from those humble beginnings, it stands out as an example of how focus, a passion for hardwork and a total commitment to quality service can bring success even to the smallest beginnings.

Currently the store is managed by the 4th generation, Martin & Geraldine's eldest daughter Kerri, who has inherited her parents' commitment & passion for the business. Norene Fitzpatrick (sister of Geraldine) plays a vital role as the purchasing officer. In addition on any given morning at the weekend between one and four of the other children can be seen serving at the delicatessen or checkout, or decorating the cakes upstairs in the bakery making the business truly a family affair.

Media & Press

EVENING ECHO, Monday, June 21, 2010

EVENING ECHO, Tuesday, August 28, 2007