The public response to Braemar Farm's trading license withdrawal by Causeway Coast & Glens Council has been overwhelming, with many expressing their disappointment on social media.
The family run business were told on the 4th January 2022 by Causeway Coast & Glens Council to cease trading from their location on Castlerock promenade and failure to comply with the request would result in legal proceedings being commenced immediately.
The withdrawal of their trading license follows a number of requests to cease trading items outside of their license agreement, namely tea, coffee and hot crepes.
The trader was issued with two warnings prior to the summer months of 2021 with a final warning issued on 19th November 2021.
This year the trader is alleged to have traded items outside of their license agreement (2nd January 2022) resulting in the withdrawal.
Taking to social media a number of locals have described the owners as 'hard working local people' who have supported 'multiple community groups and charities over the years'.
One said "This is a massive loss for Castlerock! Everyone needs to support & not let this happen. Ian & Ruth have been very charitable during COVID & are always helpful."
Another said "During the first Lockdown this family went out with a group of Community Volunteers and they gave out in the region of 500/600 ice-creams to the local people in Articlave & Castlerock. They supported the then Community Group in every way they could. Disgraceful"
Braemar Farm Ice Cream use milk from their own dairy herd and local ingredients, where possible, to produce a range of ice creams and fruit sorbets.
They sell from their trailer on Castlerock Promenade as well as shows and events across Northern Ireland. Braemar Farm also supply a number of local shops, restaurants and cafes.
In response to a query submitted by us this morning regarding the license, a council spokesperson said "Council is unable to make any comment at this stage."
The matter will be raised tomorrow night at the environmental services committee by Councillor Richard Holmes.
The item on the agenda reads :
The Mayor, Councillor Holmes (RECOMMENDED FOR CONFIDENTIAL CONSIDEDRATION)
I have been made aware of a street trader having their licence terminated on one of our pitches in Castlerock. What is the background to this termination? Why was it not brought before council for discussion?