Friday 19 October 2018

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Cork Independent

Cork Profile

Pat O’Connell, Fishmonger, Chairman of the English Market Traders Association and President of the Cork Business Association

Thursday, 18th May, 2017 1:00am

Name: Pat O’Connell

Age: 59

Lives: Lovers’ Walk

Family: Wife Margaret, daughters Sarah and Emma.

Pets: Dog, Lulu. Not my choice of name and I don’t think the dog would have chosen it either!

Favourite thing about Cork: Its sense of place, character and friendliness.

Least favourite thing about Cork: At present, the number of people sleeping rough. Surely we can do more?

One thing you’d change about Cork: I would love to see the River Lee used to its full potential. It’s an amazing amenity that is is totally under-utilised.

 

When you were small, what did you want to be as a grown-up?

A teacher.

 

Tell us about your career progression to your role today: I went to Scoil Chriost Rí, Coláiste Chriost Rí and CIT. I worked in City Hall for a few years before joining the family business in the English Market. I am now Chairman of the English Market Traders Association and President of the Cork Business Association.

 

What is the most enjoyable aspect of what you do?

Dealing with the public; I just love the interaction with customers.

 

What motivates you?

Passion for business, the English Market and Cork city.

 

What advice would you give your 15 year old self?

Don’t be afraid to trust your instincts.

 

If you weren’t in the job you have, what would you be doing?

God only knows! Life has a funny habit of leading us in directions we could never imagine.

 

What is your greatest life or career achievement to-date?

Most people would probably assume it was meeting the Queen and being invited to Buckingham Palace. But, for me, it’s being involved in a family business that has remained true to its origins and has punched way above its weight nationally and internationally.

 

Who has had the biggest influence on you in your life?

Without doubt, my mother Kathleen. She broke through so many barriers, taught us respect, led by example and instilled in (my brother) Paul and myself a great work ethic. Unfortunately, Kathleen passed away in 1998 at the age of 64, but she sure made her mark.

 

What is the life dream now?

To enjoy my family and grandchildren and to give something back to this fabulous city.

 

What is your favourite place in Cork?

My home, Tivoli Estate, Lovers’ Walk.

 

Do you have a favourite quote or motto?

If a job’s worth doing, it’s worth doing well.

 

When are you at your happiest?

When I’m with my wife and family.

 

Any regrets?

A few, but as the song says “to few to mention”.

 

What is your hidden talent?

Apparently, I’m really good at marketing!

 

What might we be surprised to know about you?

I was actually christened Gerard but Kathleen decided she preferred Pat. Could have been worse, I suppose!

 

Anything else you’d like to share with us?

I’m actually quite shy, when I step away from the business.

 

When you were small, what did you want to be as a grown-up?

A teacher.

 

Tell us about your career progression to your role today:

I went to Scoil Chriost Rí, Coláiste Chriost Rí and CIT. I worked in City Hall for a few years before joining the family business in the English Market.

I am now Chairman of the English Market Traders Association and President of the Cork Business Association.

 

What is the most enjoyable aspect of what you do?

Dealing with the public; I just love the interaction with customers.

 

What motivates you?

Passion for business, the English Market and Cork city.

 

What advice would you give your 15 year old self?

Don’t be afraid to trust your instincts.

 

If you weren’t in the job you have, what would you be doing?

God only knows! Life has a funny habit of leading us in directions we could never imagine.

What is your greatest achievement to-date?

Most people would probably assume it was meeting the Queen and being invited to Buckingham Palace. But, for me, it’s being involved in a family business that has remained true to its origins and has punched way above its weight nationally and internationally.

 

Who has had the biggest influence on you?

My mother Kathleen. She broke through so many barriers, taught us respect, led by example and instilled in (my brother) Paul and myself a great work ethic. Kathleen passed away in 1998 at the age of 64, but she sure made her mark.

 

What is the life dream now?

To enjoy my family and grandchildren and to give something back to this fabulous city.

 

What is your favourite place in Cork?

My home, Tivoli Estate, Lovers’ Walk.

 

Do you have a favourite quote or motto?

If a job’s worth doing, it’s worth doing well.

 

When are you at your happiest?

When I’m with my wife and family.

 

Any regrets?

A few, but as the song says “to few to mention”.

What is your hidden talent?

Apparently, I’m really good at marketing!

 

What might we be surprised to know ?

I was actually christened Gerard but Kathleen decided she preferred Pat. Could have been worse, I suppose!

 

Anything else you’d like to share with us?

I’m actually quite shy, when I step away from the business.

 

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