NTA criticised over plan to end direct rail services between Wexford and Dublin

James Cox

Plans to end direct rail services between Wexford and Dublin have been described as contrary to the Government's green agenda.

The National Transport Authority (NTA) is considering making travellers on the Rosslare line change to Dart carriages at either Wicklow or Greystones.

Currently, five daily services run on the line with passenger numbers rising in recent years.

South East on Track is an organisation dedicated to the improvement of rail services across the south east region.

In a statement, the organisation said: "The proposals to terminate Rosslare and Wexford to Dublin trains at Wicklow or Greystones and provide a Dart shuttle are based on two reports prepared by the National Transport Authority. We have requested copies of these reports, but based on past documents prepared by the NTA we expect that many alternate solutions to the shuttle proposal will have been ruled out of scope for spurious reasons.

"The facts of the matter are that this proposal will marginally improve services for Kilcoole and Wicklow, while making the service almost unusable for passengers at busier stations further south. According to the most recent Heavy Rail Census, Wexford Town had more passenger boardings than Wicklow Town, and Rathdrum, Arklow, Gorey, Enniscorthy, and Wexford Town had more passenger boardings than Kilcoole.

"There are no other proposals to terminate any other Inter-City or Commuter services in neighbouring counties to Dublin.

"The NTA will likely claim that this proposal is the only option to improve services on the Rosslare line. This is untrue. In the short term, using the third track at Bray station, and extending the turnback at Grand Canal Dock could provide passing options to alleviate conflicts between Inter-City trains and Darts. In the long term, additional passing locations can be explored and developed."