Sinn Féin MEP Liadh Ní Riada has warned that people living outside of Ireland’s cities cannot be left stranded due to potential cuts to intercity and regional services. Bus Éireann has signalled that some routes could be discontinued under cost-cutting measures due to be announced this quarter.
Liadh Ní Riada said, “I have written to Transport Minister Shane Ross and Acting Chief Executive of Bus Éireann Ray Hernan to express my concern at reports that Bus Éireann may discontinue its Expressway/Intercity and Regional services in the near future.
“Hundreds of thousands of individuals across Ireland depend on these services to get to school, college or work, to access health services, or to stay connected. The network of intercity and regional services is especially important to people living in rural Ireland and in our small towns.
“I have called on the Minister and on Bus Éireann management to confirm that services such as the No. 40 Route between Rosslare and Killarney (servicing Youghal, Midleton, Macroom, Baile Mhic Íre, Baile Bhuirne and Glenflesk) and the No. 51 Route between Cork and Galway (servicing Mallow, Buttevant, Ballyhea and Charleville) will not be discontinued.
These bus service is vital for people living towns throughout County Cork and their surrounding areas. I am also concerned that the already limited services to Ballycotton, Bandon, Fermoy, Mallow, Skibbereen and Whitegate could come under threat.
“I have been contacted by a number of constituents who are concerned at their ability to attend for ongoing medical treatment, or to stay in education if the routes they depend on are discontinued.
“If assurances are not forthcoming I will be joining with party colleagues to seek urgent meetings with all stakeholders, including the Department of Transport, NTA, Bus Éireann, unions and passenger groups to find a way to protect our valuable public transport services and infrastructure.”