Official Opening of M11 between Arklow and Rathnew

Sean Quirke, Director of Roads at Wicklow County Council, announced at Monday’s council meeting that work on the N11 between Arklow and Rathnew will be completed this week and as a motorway order has already been signed by the Minister the new dual carriageway is set to be officially opened on Monday 13th July.  Work on this 16.5km of dual carriageway is months ahead of schedule, it will be called the M11, will have a 120kph speed limit and will reduce the travel times for commuters.


Woodenbridge Bakery

Chamber member, Gerard O’Brien of the Woodenbridge Hotel is very happy to announce the opening of a new deli and bakery at 64 Main Street, Arklow (opposite the Bank of Ireland).  The Woodenbridge Deli and Bakery opens for business today Friday 10th July 2015.  Speaking before the opening of the bakery Gerard said ……

“My family has been in business in the Arklow area for years.  I went to school in Arklow and have seen the town go from what it was then to what it is now.  The opening of our new bakery is an investment by us in Arklow, and in particular in the main street of Arklow.  I know it is only a drop in the ocean in terms of what Arklow requires, but it is our way of showing that we believe in Arklow and that we’re backing Arklow to recover from its current demise.

I also believe we shouldn’t be too negative,  Arklow is under an hour from Dublin with a young population so Arklow will recover.  However I think this recovery will not come about from some magical outside investor or by some large multinational, but by a series of small steps and by local people and businesses helping themselves.

From our own point of view, the opening of the Bakery is a continuation of a process we started a number of years ago in the hotel, where we’ve been working hard for the last number of years to develop our own food offering and in particular focusing on the quality of our food.  Other significant changes, included the likes of using all fresh fish, giving the option of both medium and well done on our Sunday Roast and only using sirloin of beef in our burgers, we think that we’re the only place around who does this and possibly even further afield.

We now promise all our customers that where possible, everything is homemade and we take a lot of care and attention in sourcing all our ingredients.  We make all our own breads and desserts and the opening of the bakery will give people a chance to now buy these on the main street and straight from the oven.”


Arklow Seabreeze Festival 

Arklow Seabreeze Festival culminates in a three day fun weekend from Friday 17th July – Sunday 19th July.  The the annual Swinging Pubs competition runs from Thurs 9th July – Thurs 16th July, make sure to check out the amazing talent that exists in Arklow and support your local pubs. Shows each night commence at 10pm. The line-up is as follows: Thursday 9th July – Sally O’Brien’s, Friday 10th July, Christy’s, Sunday 12th July, Murphy’s, Monday 13th July, The Gin Mill, Tues 14th Kenny’s of The Gallery (formerly Butlers), Wed 15th July, Arklow Bay Hotel, Thurs 16th July, The Bridge Hotel.


Ireland’s Best Young Entrepreneur

The search is on for Ireland’s Best Young Entrepreneur and here in County Wicklow the Local Enterprise Office is looking for the top candidates to put forward to the national competition. If you or anyone you know is aged between 18-30 and running their own business, or simply has an idea for a start up, this is an opportunity not to be missed.

Up to €50,000 will be awarded to three winners whose business is based in County Wicklow. The winners at national level can then receive up to an additional €50,000 and several more applicants will win places at Wicklow’s Business Bootcamp with mentoring supports, to further develop their business skills.

The deadline to apply for this year’s Ireland’s Best Young Entrepreneur competition is Friday, July 31st and the full details are available through or by searching #IBYE on social media.


The Irish Times “Best Shops in Ireland” Awards

Now in its fourth year The Irish Times Best Shops in Ireland Awards highlight independent retailers with inspiring stock, new ideas and friendly service.  Last year they received more than 27,000 nominations for 2,700 shops from every county in Ireland – these nominations included various kinds of businesses from petrol stations to beauty salons and everything in between.  Arklow Chamber encourages  you to nominate those shopkeepers in Arklow who you think deserve to win one of these awards.  You can nominate your favourite shops under the following categories:

Best Food and/or Drink Shop;  Best Specialist Shop;  Best Fashion Store;  Best Café/Teashop;  Best Gift/Craft/Design/Interiors;  Best Salon;  Best Window Display;  Best Online Shop;  Best Market Staff/Pop-up Shop;  Best Newcomer – open less than 24 months.

For further information go to  and nominate the shop you think should be one of the finalists.