Popular Portrush restaurant closes

Jackman and Pye in Portrush which closed its doors this week until further notice.
Jackman and Pye in Portrush which closed its doors this week until further notice.
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Jackman and Pye in Portrush has closed its doors after three years in business.

The Main Street restaurant, which specialised in seafood, was last year voted ‘family friendly eatery of 2014’ by Kiddiecal parents.

Owners Sean McIlroy and Johnny Jackman broke the news about the closure on their facebook page last week.

Speaking to The Times, Sean said that winter trading in the seaside town was ‘really poor’.

“I think this was the worst winter we have experienced in our three years in business.

“It goes from one extreme to the other - queued out the door in summer, and then no one in the winter time.”

Sean said that during peak summer times he had six chefs in the kitchen.

Staffing was then reduced dramatically over the winter period, with only one chef on in the restaurant.

“We had about thirty staff during the peak summer period, and this went down to four or five in the winter,” explained Sean.

“It is just regrettable that we had to close.”

Sean and his business partner Johnny Jackman have now established J&P Catering.

“We have transformed our business now to concentrate solely on the provision of healthy nutritional school meals and outside catering.

“We started the school meals venture last year at Millstand Primary School, and numbers taking school meals have doubled. It has been very successful.

“Already we have had a few bookings for outside catering. We have kept all of the same local suppliers, so that are not missing out on trade. We are cooking from the kitchen in the Playhouse, it really just means more profit and less overheads for us.”