Farming's loss is Kilkee's Gain.
The journey from the farm where Sean Hurst grew up just outside Kilkee to opening his own pharmacy was far from direct.
As he will tell you himself, Sean was not a focused pupil when he attended primary and secondary school in Kilkee. He avoided homework at all costs and thought he might end up working his family farm.
A combination of events in his late teens changed the course of his thinking and his life forever. Sean’s Father, who had always wanted a pub, had purchased The Greyhound bar and along with the bar came Collins Medical Hall (The Pharmacy ) next door. Sadly, his father died of cancer when Sean was just 17 years old, followed by his other Father figure and neighbour who also died of cancer. The impact of this weighed heavily on his mind. The idea that one day he was going to have a pharmacy of his own, the drive to help people to stay healthy and enjoy a longer life began to form.
Setting off to Galway Sean studied Chemistry, and after graduating was employed within the pharmaceutical industry in a manufacturing company in Galway. Not feeling comfortable with the ethics of the industry and still hankering after more answers to the reasons cancer had affected those close to him, he made the decision to re qualify and set off for the prestigious School of Pharmacy at the university of Nottingham in the UK to study Pharmacy.
Unlike his school days Sean was now totally driven and laser focused, he worked hard and took a particular interest in the causes and treatments for cancer. One of the cancer research projects taking him to spend 6 months at the university of Padua, the second oldest university in the world, and the "Oxford" of Italy.
It was always the plan to return to Ireland to open his pharmacy, but he wanted to get some experience first.
Seeking work in a hospital dispensary, his first pharmacy job took him to the Isle of Wight for a year. Followed by seven years in Bath, working all around the West Coast of the UK. His responsibility and experience grew quickly. Not satisfied with working five days a week and he also worked for Boots pharmacies at the weekends.
Brexit was the catalyst to drive him back home, but before he left, he spent six months working in the remote, stunning Orkney and Shetland Islands, and the North of Scotland. developing his experience working in remote locations.
Returning to Ireland Sean began in earnest to find the perfect place to set up on his own. He worked as a locum from Wexford to Sligo searching everywhere for the perfect spot. It almost happened in Co Tipperary but fortunately for Kilkee the deal fell through.
Then Sean got word that the property formally occupied by “Peggy Stars” hairdressers was for sale in Kilkee. His plan finally came together, and his determination paid off.
Together with a great friend from his childhood who had become a builder, Sean turned himself into a builder’s labourer and four months later of sheer graft, a few up and downs trying to renovate during the height of a covid lockdown, struggling to get materials and long lead times, not to mention a few pints, the Pharmacy was ready.
Finally, in July 2020 Hurst Pharmacy opened and his childhood dream was realised.
His passion for caring for the health of the community that was sparked by his early family history has never diminished. On the rare occasions he is not working you will find him enjoying sea swimming, cycling, running, or having a well-earned pint!
Hurst Pharmacy 36 O`Curry Street, Kilkee, Ireland, V15R156 +353 65 908 3551