Witnesses have described the Black Friday carnage at a well known Coalisland fast food establishment as ‘sheer madness’ and ‘total bedlam’ after a deal on the sausage supper and a can of Lilt set pulses in the town racing.
The supper meal deal, which normally costs £4.99, was reduced to £3.99 for one day only, with a cowboy supper slashed from £5.99 to £5.20.
Before doors opened at 9am, an estimated 44 people were already shouldering each other in order to gain prime position for the charge to the counter. Although several calls were made to the PSNI to monitor the crowd before the opening by concerned town residents, authorities failed to appear with one police source reportedly saying ‘Coalisland? Are you serious?’
One regular punter, who was interviewed with a damaged sausage balancing delicately on his shoulder, revealed:
“Landi’s should have known better. I was in simply to get a bag of fish goujons for breakfast but ended up on the floor wrestling with a cousin over a portion of beans I didn’t even want. When the hurling sticks were produced I decided to give up the ghost but was still hit on the head with a severely battered sausage.”
Estimates suggest over 260 hungry customers were crammed into the premises at 9:30. Shortly after, a mini-riot commenced after owners admitted there was no Lilt left, with many refusing the offer of a free 7-Up.
“When the message was relayed about the Lilt, people lost it. The till was smashed and people were chanting things like ‘you can shove your Fanta up yer hole’ and stuff like that. This meal deal was an ill-advised decision.”
Early reports also suggest there were skirmishes just off the Tamnamore roundabout after a roadside strawberry vendor refused to reduce any of his prices for Black Friday.
Tensions are said to be simmering in Coalisland today after a ‘Black Friday’ promotional offer of a Cowboy Supper with a free can of Lilt for £5.50 in Linda’s Chippy saw fist-fights and head butting, with seven punters still receiving treatment this morning for minor fractures.
The town’s Lord Mayor, Paud McGlone, has called for calm over the weekend with Linda’s promising other amazing Black Weekend deals including a pastie bap for £3.
“Whilst I condemn the fighting, Linda’s maybe need to take a step back and understand that these people are mad for cowboy suppers as well as Lilt, and a combination of both was a death trap. A bit of common sense wouldn’t have gone amiss.”
14 locals were arrested but released within hours, with the PSNI simply asking for a common-sense approach to Black Friday deals in future.
“We will monitor the pastie bap deal closely. Any repeat of yesterday’s scenes and we’ll employ the water cannon with force.”
One of those arrested, Mrs Mary Quinn (71), admitted a feeling of hysteria when told of the deal whilst getting her hair done for Graveyard Sunday this weekend:
“I just lost it. The thought of sausages and chips swimming in a carton of beans and it being washed down with Lilt drove me mad. I just started swinging all around me in the chippy and flattened Fr Fee. He was just in for a chicken burger so I feel very bad about that.”
Linda’s revealed the deal is off the menu this weekend with cowboy suppers back to £4.99 and Lilt at a pound.