North Tipperary Community Rail Partnership hold meeting with head of Irish Rail

A local campaign group say their meeting with the head of Irish Rail last night went well.

North Tipperary Community Rail Partnership have been campaigning for improved services.

This would include adding another train on the Ballybrophy-Limerick line in the middle of the day, and increasing the speed of the trains.

Brendan Sheehan from the group says no promises were made but the meeting was a positive one.

He says they stressed that the slow speed of the train is a big issue:

“In 1962, in the age of steam, the journey time was an hour and a half. It’s two hours now. And in May ’87 it was 1 hour and 17 minutes.

“1 hour 17 minutes in excellent speeds along our line and this is when no continuous welded rail was in place, and there were lots more crossings from farmers.

“So there is no reason, to our amateur eyes, that the speed shouldn’t be increased by 10 or 20 or 30 miles an hour.”

Mr Sheehan says they were told more continuous welded rail would be needed in order for the service to be improved:

“This isn’t a contentious issue – they agree and they want to put down more of that rail.

“They explained to us that it costs them millions per kilometre but we’re very keen and I made this point clearly, that we’re not looking for them to put millions in now. We appreciate that it’s moving to the back of the queue but we simply want the existing continuous welded rail to be used at the speed that it could be.”