The Cope

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The Cope
Consumer co-operative
Industry Supermarket
Founded 1906 (1906)
Headquarters Dungloe, County Donegal, Republic of Ireland
Revenue 15 million [1]
Number of employees
110 [1]
The main Cope store, in Dungloe, Co. Donegal.

The Cope, or the Templecrone Agricultural Co-operative Society (Irish: Comharchumann Talmhaíochta agus Sóisialta Theampall Cróine), is a co-operative retail chain indigenous to The Rosses area of County Donegal in Ireland. Founded in 1906, it has a number of normal supermarkets as well as a full department store, a builders merchants and an agricultural division.

The name comes from the inability of one of the founder shareholders to say Co-Op - as he could pronounce Cope, the name The Cope was adopted. For the same reason, some people use the term to refer to the group in the U.K. named The Co-operative Group.

Outside of Donegal, the name is perhaps best known for being the semi-official nickname of a local politician Pat the Cope Gallagher, who is a former Minister of State. His family were connected to the foundation of the co-operative.

The founder of the chain, Patrick Gallagher (grandfather of the above, and known as Paddy "the Cope"), featured on a 48c Irish stamp released on 16 January 2006, depicted in front of the group's first Dungloe store.

The supermarket section of its flagship Dungloe department store was destroyed in fire in April 2006, although a reduced supermarket service was resumed within two weeks from elsewhere on the site. Construction of a new supermarket began in January 2007, and has since been completed. Initially co-branded as a Vivo store, it is now operated as a Eurospar.

The Cope has branches in the town of Dungloe, as well as Annagry, and Kincasslagh villages. They formerly had branches in Burtonport and Narin, but they have been closed; with the former branch in Lettermacaward now operated privately.


  1. ^ a b "Home Page". The Templecrone Agricultural Co-operative Society. Retrieved 2008-08-05. 

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