07 December 2021


(L-R) New Hospitality Ulster Chair Tony O'Neill, CEO Colin Neill and new Vice-Chair Stephen Magorrian

The newly appointed Chair of Hospitality Ulster, Tony O’Neill, has called on the Executive to prioritise the hospitality sector and help stabilise the industry to stave off hundreds of potential business failures.


O’Neill, a well-known restaurateur who owns Coppi and Buba has been named as the new Chair, whilst Stephen Magorrian, Managing Director of The Horatio Group was selected as the Vice Chair of Hospitality Ulster.


Tony O’Neill, new Chair of Hospitality Ulster said:


“Coming into this role, I am all too aware of the extreme challenges facing our sector and I am ready to stand up and be a strong advocate for the industry as we navigate through several years of recovery we have ahead of us. Our sector is a strong economic driver which adds real value in terms of jobs and trade, and it must be prioritised and supported through this difficult time.”


“The last two years have been devastating and as I take up the position of Chair, I am primed to reflect the good work of hospitality and its importance of the sector provides to both society and the economy. As we move into this new phase, and recovery and revitalisation are our focus, I am committed to leading from the front, ensuring we are listened to.”


“I would like to pay tribute to our outgoing Chair, Danny Coyles. A well-respected leader within our industry, Danny was committed to standing up for the hospitality sector during its toughest years in a generation. I know as he moves on, Danny will continue to be that strong voice for our sector.”


“As I take up the role, I am calling on the Executive to be forward thinking and work with us to prioritise the revitalisation of the hospitality sector for the good of not just our sector, but for the Northern Ireland’s wider economic recovery.”


Stephen Magorrian, the new Vice Chair of Hospitality Ulster added:


“In the most testing period our industry has seen, I will work alongside Tony and Chief Executive, Colin Neill, to voice the very real concerns of business owners and staff as we work to revitalise the sector post-pandemic.”


“There is no denying we are still in crisis mode, and there is a mountain to climb as we still linger in a period of uncertainty. We will work with businesses to promote their interests and importantly what they need to survive, while also being that key industry voice advocating the economic benefits hospitality brings right across Northern Ireland.”


Colin Neill, Chief Executive of Hospitality Ulster said:


“Tony and Stephen come to the roles with a breadth of knowledge and are ready to push our industry ahead.”


“We are under no illusion that the next two years will be some of the most challenging our industry has ever seen. However, I know that Tony and Stephen are committed to being the steady hands needed to advocate for businesses right across Northern Ireland and make sure the concerns and needs of the sector are heard right at the top of government.”


“I would also like to record my gratitude to Danny Coyles who was an outstanding Chair. Danny never wavered in his dedication to the hospitality sector and was relied upon to be the cool, rational head during the toughest of times. I have no doubt that we will call upon Danny in the years to come for further sound advice and guidance.”