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31st Mar 2023

Son opens rival Chinese takeaway next door to his dad’s after family row

By Fiona Frawley.

A war of the takeaways is getting underway in Ballyfermot, as a son is opening a restaurant next door to his dad’s after a family falling out.

Lam’s takeaway has been in business on Dublin’s Ballyfermot Road for 32 years and this week Jonathan Lam, son of owner Ken, has launched his own business next door, aptly named “New Lams”.

Speaking to the Irish Sun, Jonathan revealed that the falling out occurred when he was let go from the firm last year after asking his father for a pay rise.

Following the dismissal, Jonathan decided to open his own takeaway, while Ken has also applied for permission to open a new sit-down eatery a few doors up from the two restaurants.

Jonathan says he has been helping at his father’s takeaway since the age of eight, before going on to work there for two decades as an adult.

The stint came to an end following what Jonathan describes as a final confrontation with his dad over pay after previously being “fobbed off” over the issue for “many years”.

“Not revenge”

Ahead of the scheduled opening in two weeks, Jonathan has insisted the new business “is not revenge”.

“It is heavy, it is hard”, Jonathan told The Sun.

“I still love my da, it is not revenge. What do you want me to do? I’m from this town. It (asking for the pay rise) is the straw that broke the camel’s back. It is not easy for me. If I don’t do this, I’ll never forgive myself.

“Nobody just sets up a business beside their da (for no reason), do you know what I mean?

“It is a very emotional thing for me. This whole process is very emotional, even talking now I’m welling up.

“I worked there for 20 years and he just let me go. I have a family to feed”.

Chinese takeaway Ballyfermot

Lam’s takeaway on Ballyfermot Road, image via Google Maps

“Dignity is gone”

When asked by The Sun about working out a resolution with his son, Ken said:

“I don’t think so. That’s how cheap he is. His dignity is gone. If you open a shop, why open beside me? He can open somewhere else. It is making it awkward, why?

“I’m on the edge of retirement. So I don’t worry about it, do you know what I mean? But they will, they will worry. They have to worry”.

New Lam’s is due to open on Ballyfermot Road in two weeks.

Originally published on LovinDublin.