Electric fans, paddling pools ... and Maine mineral

SALES of electric fans and paddling pools have soared across north Antrim during the summer heatwave and at Ballymoney’s Maine Soft Drinks factory, bottles have been flying off the production line.

Temperatures have been high since the start of the summer holidays and in a bid to keep children cool, many families splashed out on paddling pools for their back gardens.

But in Ballymoney, at least, you had to move fast as at Walker’s toy store in Main Street, they sold out.

It is understood at least 100 paddling pools were quickly snapped up at Walker’s.

And another in-demand product in recent days were fans and although some stocks are still available in north Antrim, that may not be the case if the hot weather keeps up as wholesale suppliers were telling local shop owners last week they had none available.

Marty O’Halleron from PC Electrics in Ballycastle told the Times: “Fans are flying off the shelves. We must have sold five dozen and we have three or four suppliers but they are telling us they have none left.”

Some people have also been buying new refridgerators as they found some older models were struggling to cope with the high heat, it emerged.

At Basil Knipe’s in Ballymoney, Sales Advisor Neil Martin, said they had sold dozens of fans but they hoped they would be able to get new supplies in.

Also in Ballymoney, one man who loves to see hot weather is Jonathan Harkness from the Maine Soft Drinks factory on the Ballymena Road.

He told us: “Yes, we are very busy and we are doing lots of over-time and it is fair to say I love to see the warm weather!”

And he revealed their pineapple flavour in particular is proving very popular.