Cookstown salon boss who lost everything in arson speaks out

The owner said not so much as a nail file can be salvaged
The owner said not so much as a nail file can be salvaged
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The owner of a Cookstown salon, beauty and nail bar destroyed in an arson attack last Wednesday has been forced to relocate so she can keep working.

The Nail, Hair and Beauty Garage’s owner Deirdre Conway, said on Facebook: "It’s hitting home that the beautiful salon that I have built up over 10 years has been destroyed.

"Nothing can be salvaged - not even as much as a nail file."

Thanking "wonderful friends" for their support throughout the ordeal, she told the Mail she would like to "thank them (everyone who has helped) from the bottom of my heart".

"People have called with cards and flowers and everything," she said.

Online she singled out Pauline Campbell whom she said was "a God send along with other salon owners who have offered me rooms and products to get me going".

The salon will be closed for at least three months

The salon will be closed for at least three months

Deirdre also said it would be a minimum of three months before her own salon was back in business, and that she is now seeing her clients at Lopa’s, Brewery Lane from 10am-5pm, Tuesday to Saturday.

"The good people we have in Cookstown surpasses the bad," she added.

Just two days after Deirdre’s sister Maria McMullan launched a JustGiving page to help her rebuild her ruined business, £450 of the £2,000 they hope to raise has been donated.

"My sister Deirdre Conway has had her 10 year business destroyed by an arson attack," Maria said.

Windows were broken in the attack

Windows were broken in the attack

"It will be months before she can even start to rebuild her business.

"She has lost everything except for her will to survive but she needs help," she added. "Deirdre has spent years raising money for so many charities and now she needs your help. Anything will be greatly appreciated."

The fire that destroyed Deirdre’s salon was reported by a nearby business just after 8am on Wednesday, April 5.

Two fire crews from Cookstown were called out to deal with the blaze, but the inside of the premises, which is on Orritor Road, was destroyed.

Fire damage inside the salon

Fire damage inside the salon

A spokesperson for the PSNI said they arrested, and have since released (on conditional bail), a 28-year-old male.

NIFRS said they thought the fire was the result of "deliberate ignition".

The link to the JustGiving page is here: https://www.justgiving.com/crowdfunding/maria-mcmullan-1?utm_id=108&utm_term=9Vb83wjmQ