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Beloved Limerick business Bakehouse 22 closes after 72 years in business

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Bakehouse 22 closes – In recent years, the trade has declined, and costs have soared, making it impossible to remain open

The decision was not easy but is the right call for the owners and the Tracey family

By I Love Limerick correspondent Ellie McCarthy

Pictured in 2019 are Maura O’Neill, Tidy Towns Committee member with Sheelagh and Mike Tracey, owners of Bakehouse 22, the Limerick Tidy Towns Award winner for February 2019. Picture: Conor Owens/ilovelimerick.

Bakehouse 22 closes its doors on the well-known and loved café, bakery, and shop, the owner Mike Tracey, has announced.


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The café has been in the Tracey family for 72 years. Mike’s parents first opened the business on Castle Street before moving to Nicholas Street.

In recent years Bakehouse 22 has made a name for itself as it became a hot spot for locals and an excellent tourist attraction due to its close location to King John’s Castle in the heart of the city. The service and food were nothing short of excellence.

It was one of the first outlets in Limerick City to famously offer lottery services and Mike fondly recalls the queues outside the door on a Saturday night.

However, in recent years, the trade has declined, and costs have soared, making it impossible to remain open. 

The owner described this as a sad but unavoidable day as they had a tough few months. In May, windows and fridges had to be replaced due to a fire in a bin located near the property but not owned by the café. There was also smoke damage to the building.

The owner, Mike Tracey took to Instagram and said, “This is the last broadcast from us, from Sheelagh, myself, the family, and the staff of Bakehouse 22, it’s been a big emotional day for us and one that I have been dreading, we finally closed our doors after 72 years.

“Today, and the last couple of days, it felt like there has been a death in the family knowing that this has been coming, and it’s here.”

Mike said the well wishes they have gotten from customers, friends, and family have gotten them through this tough time of huge changes. 

The decision was not easily made but is the right call for the owners and the extended Tracey family.

Fans of Bakehouse 22 took to social media and said, “Best wishes in the next chapter, you will all be missed and will miss the coffee stop on the 3 bridges walk. Best wishes.”

Another said, “So sad especially knowing how much you put into the business. Wishing you lots of success and happiness.”

A loyal customer commented, “Best of luck Mike and family. Thanks for being patient with us young lads who grew up on Nicholas Street and giving us the few odd jobs over the years to keep us in line. From the McInerney family.”

Bakehouse 22 is now for sale through Hogan Durkan.

For more information on the Bakehouse 22 building, go HERE

For more stories on Bakehouse 22, go HERE

Richard is a presenter, producer, songwriter and actor. He was named the Limerick Person of the Year (2011) and won an online award at the Metro Éireann Media and Multicultural Awards (2011) for promoting multi-culturalism online. Richard says that the ilovelimerick.com concept is very much a community driven project that aims to document life in Limerick. So, that in 20 years time people can look back and remember the events that were making the headlines.