Tipperary rail threat: More trains needed to put Clonmel station back on track

Meeting sought with officials of Iarnrod Eireann

Eamonn Wynne

Reporter:

Eamonn Wynne

A meeting has been sought with Iarnrod Eireann in an attempt to increase the number of trains travelling through Clonmel railway station, it was decided at a meeting of Clonmel Borough District.

The discussion at the council meeting took place before a report in the Irish Independent yesterday, Tuesday, suggested that the Limerick Junction to Waterford rail line was one of four earmarked for closure.

The line serves Clonmel, Carrick-on-Suir, Cahir and Tipperary Town.

Cllr. Siobhan Ambrose said the town was very fortunate to have a train station but unfortunately only two trains left Clonmel every day.

Passengers using the 8.05am train didn't arrive in Dublin until 11am, which wasn't conducive to doing business, while the other train left at 8.05pm.

By contrast, 19 trains left Thurles for Dublin every day and a lot of Clonmel people used that service.

Clonmel was a regional town and they needed to meet Iarnrod Eireann officials and tell them that just two trains a day wasn't conducive to business or pleasure, and that was why the service wasn't being utilised.

If there was "a bit of joined-up thinking" and the timetables changed then so many people wouldn't have to travel to Dublin by car, said Cllr. Ambrose.

Cllr. Richie Molloy said it almost seemed as if Iarnrod Eireann was trying to close the station by stealth.

Something would have to be done about the timetable because it just wasn't working.

Anytime you travelled to Dublin by train from Thurles you met people from Clonmel giving out about the lack of trains from the town.

Cllr. Pat English said that the station was a great asset to the town.

Clonmel was the largest town in the county and it was essential that the rail service wouldn't be just retained but expanded.

He accused Iarnrod Eireann of having dodged the big issues of serious investment and changing the timetable.