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Finbarr Filan, Centra Sligo

Vice Chair

Finbarr is a native of Sligo town and operates the award winning family owned Centra store in Sligo. Having qualified as a Manufacturing Engineer, Finbarr has many years’ experience at senior level in Medical Device Manufacturing, Pharmaceutical Manufacturing and Construction prior to moving to retail.

In 2012, Finbarr joined a pilot project funded by SEUPB and managed by Sligo County Council, researching various models of town centre regeneration that promoted an active partnership approach between the business community and the Council. Pre and post analysis by UK-based town centre place managers of the newly formed town team, showed that the team had exceeded the project KPI’s and indeed had outperformed some of the project partners.

This project led Sligo to hold a plebiscite amongst the business community on initiating a Business Improvement District (BID). The plebiscite resulted in a yes vote from local businesses and the BID formed in 2016 and recently held its second plebiscite receiving an 80% yes vote for another five-year term. Finbarr served 3 years as the first Chair of Sligo BID and is currently a board member.

Finbarr is steadfast in his commitment to assisting in town centre management, promoting Sligo as a destination of choice and most importantly ensuring the continued survival of both the FDI and indigenous SME sectors in regional towns.

Currently Finbarr is Chair of the Purple Flag team (award for towns and cities that reach a standard of excellence in the evening and nighttime economy), Chair of Sligo Tidy Towns, Chair of the St Patricks Day Festival Committee, member of the Government Advisory Group for the Town Centre First Policy in the Programme for Government and steering group member of the Irish Town and City Development Association.

Finbarr holds a BTech in Manufacturing Technology, ACCA Dip in Accounting and Finance and Post Grad Diplomas in European Studies and Management.

Finbarr is the ISME Vice-Chair 2023-2025.