Best Shops 2016: your county needs your vote
With more than 23,000 nominations so far, how has your county fared?
Best Shops 2016: over 23,000 nominations
Dublin, not surprisingly, leads the charge having garnered 39 per cent of the votes so far. It stands to reason that the most densely populated county would poll highest but but if you take the capital out of the equation it is the other capital Cork city and its county surrounds that is out in front with nine per cent of all nominations. Co Waterford is in third place with five per cent of the vote.
Counties Tipperary, Kerry and Kildare share fourth place with three per cent of this year’s overall vote. In joint fifth place are counties Kilkenny, Leitrim, Louth, Mayo, Meath, Roscommon and Westmeath who all have two per cent of the nominations.
Some of the less populated counties have really been getting behind their shops. Donegal, with a population of 158,755, according to the 2016 census figures, has garnered three per cent of the overall vote, the same percentage as Co Galway, a county that with a population of 258,552 is about one third bigger in size. The café and tearoom category is Donegal’s strongest, garnering 36 per cent of its overall vote.
Leitrim, Ireland’s least populated county, with 31,972people, accounts for two per cent of the overall vote, the same percentage as voted by Counties Kilkenny and Meath, each with respectively far larger populations; the home of the cats is over three times the size of Leitrim at 99,118 people while the royal county, in Dublin’s commuter belt, has a population that is almost six times that of Leitrim, 194,942 at the 2016 census.
Counties Carlow, Clare, Laois, Limerick and Longford each has one per cent each of the overall vote and share sixth position.
Family-run businesses are important to Co Roscommon readers with 60 per cent of its entire vote in the category; in Kerry, some 29 per cent of the votes are also in this section. Co Mayo has also polled strongly in this category with 22 per cent of its 344 votes so far in this category.
They’re craft and gift mad in Co Meath, with almost 42 per cent of all votes in this section, while it’s the café and tea room category that has proved most popular with Co Sligo voters.
The Dublin commuter counties of Wicklow, Kildare, Meath and Louth fade into comparison, are not nearly as well represented respectively garnering three, four, two and two per cent of the overall vote. So come on commuters – if you want to see your favourite shops considered for the shortlist then you need to get voting. Tell us about great cafes, gorgeous fashion shops and specialist shops that you think the nation needs to hear about.
It seems we’re a high maintenance lot in Ireland. The category that has gathered the most votes so far is best salon, accounting for 21 per cent of the overall vote. This includes barbers, shaving salons, wax experts, brow and last bars, as well as beauty and hair salons.
So which county is the vainest? Step forward county Louth – the wee county – where 69 per cent of all votes has been in the salon section. Co Offaly is in second place with almost 54 per cent of its votes in the best salon category. Next up is the thoroughbred county of Kildare, where 41 of its readers voted for their favourite salons and in Waterford 36 per cent of all the votes cast by readers were for salons.
When compared to Corkonians, Dubliners would appear to be more vain, with readers in the capital casting 24 per cent all votes in the salon section. In Cork, salons only accounted for seven per cent of its vote.
The bookshop category, which was re-introduced this year, sees Co Galway leading the bookworm charge, with 15 per cent of all its nominations coming from this category. Sligo, Yeats’ country, and Waterford, home to playwright Jim Nolan, both garnered 12 per cent of their respective votes in this section. Bookshops fared badly in several counties with not a single vote given in this category in Counties Laois, Monaghan, Offaly, Carlow, Fermanagh, Longford and Louth. What would its esteemed writers think?
There are several counties that have received some nominations but not enough to lift them from registering under 1 per cent of the overall nominations. Come on Antrim, Armagh, Cavan, Derry, Down, Fermanagh, Monaghan, Offaly and Tyrone. If you want a shop in your locale to be in with a chance of being shortlisted, then your county need your vote.