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Paul Cuddy: I always wanted to follow my dad into the retail trade

Paul Cuddy tells Margaret Canning about emerging from lockdown and obtaining a bank loan to say afloat

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Paul Cuddy outside his shop in Magherafelt

Paul Cuddy outside his shop in Magherafelt

Photo by Kelvin Boyes / Press E

Paul Cuddy outside his shop in Magherafelt

A major independent retailer in mid-Ulster has said a bank loan taken out under the government's Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme has been crucial to securing its future.

Paul Cuddy runs three Cuddys stores in Ballymena, Carrickfergus and Magherafelt with his brother Steven. Their father Robert started the business 62 years ago in Magherafelt when he bought a traditional drapers store, then known as Hughes' shop.

The branch in Ballymena followed around 28 years ago, then the Carrickfergus store was opened around 1998.