Cork Past & Present
Cork's history, culture, places, people, and events
One of the most distinctive buildings in the centre of Cork city is situated at the junction of Saint Patrick's Street and Daunt's Square. This building now houses MacDonald's but was for over a century the well-known premises of Woodford, Bourne & Co. grocers and wine merchants. The company can trace its origins back to a firm of wine merchants named Maziere and Sainthill which was trading in Cork as early as 1750. Maziere and Sainthill had premises in Nelson's Place, the older name for Emmet Place.
In the mid nineteenth century, John Woodford had a grocery shop on the Grand Parade. John Woodford died from an illness contracted while he was engaged in charitable work during the Famine. After his death his widow married a Mr. Bourne who was an employee of Woodford's and thereafter the firm was known as Woodford, Bourne & Co. In 1869, Woodford Bourne bought the stock of the wine merchant Richard Sainthill and expanded the business to include wines. An employee of the firm James Adam Nicholson, an immigrant from England, eventually became sole owner and the firm remained in the hands of the Nicholson family for generations. The shop on St. Patrick's Street was one of the best stocked shops in the city and the firm also owned extensive warehouse premises on Sheares Street.
In the 1980s, the shop was converted to a fast food outlet named 'Mandy's' and the premises was taken over by MacDonald's in the mid-1980s.