Having worked in retail I know that today should have been the second busiest day in retailers' year. Only next Saturday the last before Christmas will see higher footfall and turnover.
However, with tensions already heightened and many people avoiding Belfast City Centre, with the ongoing uncertainty about protests about the flag, we now have a bob alert phoned into Castle Court. The biggest retail mall in the City Centre on one of the busiest retail streets. Surronding businesses already affected last Saturday by the flags protest keeping people out of the city centre are seeing more people driven out of from a police cordon around Castle Court.
Northern Ireland people being what they are, will suspect there may be another device somewhere in the City Centre to others may be deserting other retailers even though there is no immediate threat.
So for the second Saturday in a row Belfast retailers will be seeing takings down. Saturdays in December are often what allow shops to keep going in tough financial times. But losing out on two of these in Belfast there may be more empty shops in the city centre early next year because this ongoing stupidity. This bomb threat has not been linked to the flags protests, but with tensions already high it certainly isn't helping the local economy.
Update with nothing suspicious found the people who called in this warning are even bigger eejits.