Southern shoppers in trolley fights and parking rages

December 13, 2008

As the pound hit another record low against the euro at the weekend, there have been reports of parking rage and trolley fights between southern shoppers who have travelled to Newry in search of bargains.

Trolleys are being abandoned all over the city as shoppers transport their goods to whatever parking space they have been lucky enough to obtain.

In one unsavoury incident, police were called to restore order after two women became engaged in a “punch-up” over a shopping trolley, the contents of which one shopper has just emptied into the boot of her car.  Witnesses described the scene as a “pretty nasty row.”  While it is also alleged that two men were fighting over a parking space that had just been vacated.

Due to the recent cut in the VAT rate in the North, food, electrical goods and alcohol cost up to 30 per cent less than in the South, making the journey for southern shoppers extremely worthwhile in the run up to Christmas. 

Dundalk TD Arthur Morgan described some southern-registered cars returning from their cross-border shopping trips as “a health and safety risk” such is the extent of their cargo, while Finance Minister Brian Lenihan has commissioned a study by the Central Statistics Office to discover just how much revenue was being lost due to cross-border shopping.