A CORK barber has said that he is “devastated” following the news that hairdressers and barbers will be opening their doors “much later” than 5 March.
Speaking on Tuesday, Tánaiste Leo Vardakar said Cabinet is hoping to agree on a revised plan to reopen society by February 22.
The proposals would come into effect on March 5 at the earliest and would be a revision to the existing Living with Covid-19 plan.
When asked about the reopening of personal services, the Tánaiste said that he could not give a definite date but said that it would be “definitely much later” than 5 March.
Speaking to The Echo, Mick Moriarty, owner of The Baldy Barber in Blackpool said he was hopeful of a reopening soon and that he was not expecting the closure at Christmas to last for as long as it has.
“I most certainly didn’t expect this,” he said, “because we have done everything right.
“Hairdresser, barbers – they have done everything right.”
He said that he was “absolutely devastated” after hearing the comment made by the Tánaiste and feels that he was “jumping the gun” by mentioning the plans ahead of the revision expected on 22 February.
The Blackpool Barber has been in business for 84 years and next month would mark Mr Moriarty’s 54th year in the family businesses.
He noted the hard work that has been put in by barbers and hairdresser to reopen safely, stating that he had just received a large number of disposable hairdressing gowns on 22 December, just before they closed their doors.
Amy Shanahan, owner of Amy Michelle Hairdressing said that she was not expecting a reopening on 5 March.
“I kind of guessed that it wasn’t going to happen. I knew it wasn’t going to be like when we came out of the first lockdown,” she said.
“I was disappointed obviously, but not too shocked,” she added.
Ms Shanahan said that another closure in December was difficult and after being closed for so long, their return will be “like starting from scratch again”.
“We’re going to have to go through health and safety again, we’ll have to get our staff back, make sure they’re comfortable with it. It’s like starting from scratch again, it’s very tough,” she said.
However, the salon owner is hopeful for a reopening sometime in April and she said that she is waiting for the revision of the Living with Covid-19 plan on 22 February to provide further clarity.