Several high-profile retailers in the Republic have been accused of abusing the current Covid-19 restrictions by staying open while others have been accused of “stealing business” from rivals by venturing into new markets.

UK multiples Sports Direct, Office and DV8 were among a list of brands criticised for keeping their outlets open despite a nationwide lockdown of all non-essential retail. They were also accused of stocking up on certain Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), such as face coverings, solely to stay open.

Other smaller individual stores that fall into the essential retail category were also criticised for selling an expanded range of goods, outside their normal remit, in a bid to boost sales during the current restrictions.

Sports Direct said, however, its Irish stores were “only selling essential products” in keeping with the new Level 5 restrictions.

“All non-essential products have been moved to the back of the shop and/or are cordoned off from customers,” a spokeswoman said.



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