President of Mullingar Chamber of Commerce, Pat Whelan with Niamh Doherty at House of Flowers, Mount Street on Friday for the launch of "The Gar".
Worldwide requests for the limited edition Niall Horan Gar are flooding Mullingar Chamber ever since news of their availability for 2014 was announced.
After 41,401 people read the story in the Westmeath Examiner online, the newspaper came on board to support both the Gar campaign and the business community in Mullingar.
Now the Westmeath Examiner can exclusively announce, the Gar is available to purchase online from today, Valentine’s Day from the Mullingar Chamber Website www.mullingarchamber.ie.
Social media sites dedicated to all things "One Direction" urged fans to seek out these limited edition notes, praising Ireland for "loving Niall as much as we do" and even confusing the marketing move as actual legal tender.
"What started out as the Chamber honouring Niall has turned into a bit of a phenomenon. Some stories even said we were printing his face on money. We have requests from One Direction Fans in Spain, Argentina, the UK, the USA and Australia asking 'Can they get some Gar?
The Gar, designed by Bartle D'Arcy, Directing Tourism as part of a wider "Marketing Mullingar" Campaign in 2011 and promises to pay the bearer a discount in shops in Mullingar. The latest print run of this unique Chamber Currency honours Niall Horan and features the young pop star's face.
"Niall is just a phenomenon. He is loved in Ireland and throughout the world. Putting him on the Gar was the town's way of recognising his stellar success and also to communicate our pride that he is one of Mullingar's citizens," said Pat Whelan, Chamber President.
The Gar is based on the old ten punt note; since its launch in 2011 it has featured James Joyce, who lived in Mullingar and John Joe Nevin, Olympic silver medal winner from the town.
“As a tourism currency, it highlights the work of the Chamber and brings attention to Mullingar as it is a unique "currency" whose purpose is to encourage an increased spend in the shops in the town and promote the town. We are delighted to be a part of this effective promotion and hope that his fans throughout the world will keep up to date with all the news from Niall’s home with our online edition, www.westmeathexaminer.ie, said Dale Greenwood, Group Business Manager
Midland Gateway President John Humphries worked hard to put the foundations in place with the Horan family and One Direction management to allow the Chamber to use his image on their new print run.
"That people are excited that we are honouring Niall like this is just brilliant. We have spent the last month organising a way to make sure that anyone, no matter where they are in the world, will be able to get themselves a limited edition Niall Horan Gar," said John Humphries.