Marie Louise McConville: Stop Moaning and Enjoy £ 100 Voucher

Honestly, what would we do with ourselves if we didn’t spend so much time complaining, eh?

There’s a good chance we could write a series of books, travel the world, or explore space – each would take a considerable amount of time, but that’s the time we spend moaning, it seems.

I’m actually surprised that we don’t have a dedicated Olympic team to complain – we would win gold every time.

This week there was good news (one might think) for households in Northern Ireland when the High Street Voucher Scheme was launched.

Almost anyone aged 18 and over in Northern Ireland can apply for the £ 100 card and requests can be made until 25 October. The card must then be spent before November 30.

The goal of the program is to get people shopping on Main Street to help support local businesses that have been affected during the pandemic.

With £ 100 free at my disposal I had been counting the days to log in and apply and when Monday arrived I, like many, many others, logged in to get the ball rolling.

However, in just a few hours (I’m surprised it even took that long) complaints poured in.

Many took to social media to say they couldn’t access the NI Direct website, others complained that they still hadn’t received the necessary email link to add their personal information, while some were even totally opposed to free. money (they can’t buy me, etc.).

When I logged in I was taken to a page where I had to leave my email address.

After doing this I was told that I would receive an email with a link attached “shortly”.

This email arrived about five hours later – but come on, what were we expecting?

I added my contact details and about six hours later I received another email thanking me for my application.

He informed me that they had to verify my details first before gently reminding me that I was only one of the 1.4 million eligible, so it could take a while – so be patient (basically) – but they would answer me.

I think it was fair enough.

With so many people eligible, it was of course going to take a while to get online and apply.

Who the hell didn’t expect this?

Some people are so quick to complain – yes it will take time and yes we have to be patient, is it that hard?

As for those who “do not take this free money”, know that you would be the same to complain if they had not offered us anything.

I played my part during the pandemic and still do and I am very happy to receive this little thank you to spend as I wish.

Can’t wait to hit the stores – after all, we deserved it.


Just when you thought life got pretty weird, we’re told cardboard furniture is the next trend to come.

Apparently, as more of us try to live more sustainable lifestyles, cardboard has become the last textile to find itself in demand – after athletes slept on cardboard beds at the Olympics in Tokyo.

According to interior designers, we will all be relying on cardboard soon, as it is a lighter, less bulky option and, if treated properly, could have a life expectancy of 10 years.

It’s a trend I don’t think I will sign up for.



Halloween is finally on the horizon, so how about winning a family movie pass to spoil the kids?

Movie House Cinemas has four locations in Northern Ireland, at City Side in Belfast, Glengormley, Maghera and Coleraine, and there are plenty of movies coming up to keep the whole family entertained.

These include the Animated Adventure, The Addams Family 2 – “Unhappy To See You Again” and the action-packed Ron Goes Wrong.

Also this month, Boss Baby 2: Family Business, which sees the Templeton brothers reunited.

Full details are available at

I have two Movie House Family Passes to give away.

If you would like a chance to win a pass, simply send your name, address and phone number – along with the answer to the question below – to [email protected]

The closing date for registrations is Tuesday, October 5, 2021 at 12 p.m.

(Q) How many Movie House cinemas are there in Northern Ireland?

Normal Irish News rules apply


The winners of the Such A Quiet Place competition are Marie Hughes, Belfast, Eileen Donnelly, Armagh, Marie McStay, Lurgan, Brian Hill, Belfast, and Frances Doyle, Draperstown.

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