Belfast Telegraph

Family butcher chain takes on 10th store

By Rachel Martin

The McAtamney's Traditional Butchers business has opened its tenth shop.

This week the family-run chain took over Hunter's Butcher Shop in Limavady after its owner retired.

The shop on Main Street in the Co Londonderry town also includes a deli and will be McAtamney's second store in Limavady.

And it comes as the Co Antrim firm announces it also plans to open a further three stores.

The next store will open in the early part of 2017 and will be located in Galgorm, outside Ballymena.

The other two stores will open over the next 18-24 months and will see the firm's workforce increase from 100 to 150.

The Limavady shop traded for its first day under its new owners yesterday - but it's "very much business as usual", bosses have said.

The store will be rebranded during the next few weeks, but will remain open throughout the process.

John Apperley from McAtamney's said: "We were delighted to take up this opportunity to expand our shops and offering in Limavady. We plan to maintain the current staff and will continue to trade as normal with no interruption to business, expanding the current offering to include our own products and ranges.

"We wish Ian Hunter (proprietor of Hunter's Butchers) a very happy retirement."

Ian Hunter added: "The sale of my business was not a decision which I took lightly and I gave careful consideration to who I would sell to as I have invested many years in building a loyal customer base. It was important for me to have peace of mind that the new purchaser would be able to offer my regular customers the same quality of product and service that they have been accustomed to over the years.

"I am delighted that the buyer is McAtamney's and I think the quality of their butchers shops speak for themselves."

McAtamney's also runs shops in Ballymena, Ballymoney, Coleraine, Cookstown, Garvagh, Limavady, Kilrea, Magherafelt and Maghera.

The firm added that its Irish Green Street store in Limavady, which opened in 2006, will be unaffected by the latest acquisition.

A statement from the company said the future of the chain is "very promising" and added that there was potential for further business growth.

The company launched its McAtamney's Gourmet Kitchen ready meal range in 2010.

McAtamney's has said that it hand-picks its meat and uses only Northern Ireland Farm Quality Assured beef purchased on the bone.

The firm has won a number of awards such as the Traditional Fine Food and Butchery Awards, Great Taste Awards and Northern Ireland Butcher Shop of the Year.

Belfast Telegraph