Chairman Pip's Railway Thoughts

They have nerve; you have to give ’em that

Posted in Ireland by Chairman Pip on 8 August 2010

You’ve got to admit that they have some nerve, although in this case that probably isn’t a good thing. Iarnród Éireann have come out with all guns blazing in response to a report by the South East Regional Authority, a banner organisation representing a number of councils in the south east of Ireland, that criticises the decision to close the Waterford-Rosslare line, stating that with more services and better promotion, the route would attract more users, and that Iarnród Éireann’s decisions in regards to the line have been flawed. Iarnród Éireann has come back by putting the blame squarely with the councils for the decisions they’ve made in terms of planning and development around the line.

We have made assessments in relation to operating additional services, which showed they would generate greater losses. The local authorities did nothing in recent years to make this line sustainable. You could have had focused development around the line to improve its sustainability, but that didn’t happen.

Barry Kenny, Iarnród Éireann

 

This may be true to a certain extent, as the Celtic Tiger did bring about much cock-eyed development around the country, often times with little regard to the location of infrastructure. But, it isn’t the local councils that have run down the service, is it? It isn’t the local councils that have timetabled just one train per day in each direction, that don’t connect with other services and are at ridiculous times of day is it? It is Iarnród Éireann’s job to run trains, not dictate how local councils should develop their areas. Once again, it appears that the national operator is trying to pass the buck where this issue is concerned. Hopefully, the fact that the Waterford-Rosslare line is generating more and more publicity as an issue will lead to a successful conclusion. Community rail partnerships, like those that operate on rural lines in Great Britain, could well be the key to saving this line, as well as others in Ireland over which Iarnród Éireann would like to bring down the axe.

“Regional Authorities submit case to NTA opposing closure of Rosslare-Waterford railway line”

“Iarnród Éireann blames councils for hastening closure of railway”

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