Kearney’s celebrates 20th anniversary on its Randalstown site

Kearney’s celebrates 20th anniversary on its Randalstown site
Family members James Kearney, Oliver Kearney and Oonagh Heatley.

It’s been a mainstay of Randalstown’s main street for the last 20 years – but the pandemic months have shown how important Kearney’s is to life in the Co Antrim village.

They say china is the perfect gift to celebrate a 20th anniversary, but the reward for Kearney’s as it approached its 20th year on its site in Randalstown was a serious ramping up of the workload.

Despite the challenges of lockdown, the store continued its same-day delivery service for its customers even when people were struggling to book delivery slots at the bigger multiples, according to store manager Oonagh Kearney..

“Thankfully we were able to get enough stock and we seemed to be getting through quite well with it and getting people what they needed,” she says.

“We had four vans on the road, and the customers emailed or phoned in their orders and they got them that day.”


It’s a telling sign of the affection in which Kearney’s is held that the community rallied round to make sure customers got their deliveries at the height of lockdown.

“Before Covid, we were probably doing in and around 15 deliveries a day, but when Covid hit, we rose to around 120 deliveries on one particular day. It was a massive increase,” Oonagh says.

“Thankfully some of the local clubs stepped in and one or two of them helped us to make the deliveries, including Tir na Nog and Creggan football clubs.

“Also, some local people in the community stepped forward to help and it really showed how Randalstown is really a community where everyone is there to help.

“The deliveries were a massive thing, trying to get that organised, but thankfully our staff stuck by us as well and they all worked really hard through it.

“We had a few isolated cases of Covid where they got it outside of the shop, but thankfully we didn’t have any outbreaks which was good. We found that because we were doing high volumes of deliveries we kept footfall into the shop to a minimum, which protected the staff and everybody felt a little bit safer.”


Kearney’s has had a presence on that particular site on the main street in Randalstown for the last 20 years, but before that they had a smaller shop, Oonagh says.

“It started off with my great great granny running a shop which was called Scotts at that point. It was a milk bar back then, and then her son, my great uncle Col, took it over and had a fruit and veg shop,” she says.

“And 20 years ago we built the new premises. We had joined Costcutter at that stage and we needed a bigger shop just to evolve the business – at that time there was no other supermarket in the town.

Oonagh is proud of the innovations that the store has undertaken over the years.

“We now have a purpose-built kitchen where we do a lot of our own products. We have our own Kearney’s brands – we don’t supply anyone else, we just do that in our own store,” she says.

The switch to building their own kitchen and making their own food products came in response to changing customer trends, she says.

“People had changed to, rather than making things from scratch themselves, they wanted something that was handy, something they needed to heat, so we found there was a bigger demand for that,” Oonagh says.

A key part of the store’s ethos is its charity work – every year they pick one charity to receive all the money they have raised.

In September, they held a Spinathon just outside the shop which raised £1,875 for AWARE.

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