Best Shops in Ireland 2016: the judges
Working from reader nominations, our judges are getting ready to visit a lot of shops
The judges (clockwise from top left): Eddie Shanahn, Deirdre McQuillan, Simon Pratt, Sarah Halliwell, John Redmond and Alanna Gallagher
John Redmond, Creative Director, Brown Thomas
John Redmond, who started his visual merchandising career at the age of 12, dressing the window of mother’s shop in Carlow, is now responsible for one of the nations best-loved series of windows on Grafton Street. As creative director at the Brown Thomas Group he has been responsible for some of the nation’s most beguiling window and in-store treatments.
Eddie Shanahan, Retail Consultant
Eddie Shanahan is a fashion and retail consultant who guest lectures at Lettterkenny Institute of Technology’s retail degree programme.
Simon Pratt, Managing Director, Avoca
Simon Pratt is MD of Avoca, one of Ireland’s best known retail businesses. The company has won many accolades including being named one of the 100 Most Inspirational Stores in the World by Retail Week magazine. The business was recently acquired by Aramark corp, a US plc.
Deirdre McQuillan, Fashion Editor The Irish Times
Fashion editor of the Irish Times, who has discovered many of the nation’s new design talents.
Sarah Halliwell, Beauty Editor, The Gloss
Sarah Halliwell has been writing about shopping, beauty and travel for a variety of publications including Time Out and Elle magazine for nearly 20 years . She is Beauty Editor at The Gloss Magazine since April 2011.
Robert Doherty, AIB, Merchant Services
Robert Doherty is head of product and Clover at AIB Merchant Services. This is his third year as a judge, and a secret shopper, of The Irish Times Best Shops competition.
Alanna Gallagher, journalist, The Irish Times
Alanna Gallagher has co-ordinated The Irish Times Best Shops competition for the last three years. A shopping columnist for both the Magazine and Property she also curates the home and gift section of the annual Irish boutique trade show Showcase.