It is imperative that that there is increased investment in rural public transport, say the Tipperary Social Democrats.

Investment needed in Tipp rail services

The Tipperary Social Democrats have expressed disappointment that Iarnrod Éireann has no plans to automate 12 manned level crossings on the Ballybrophy-Nenagh-Limerick Railway line.

In response to a parliamentary question raised by Social Democrats TD, Róisín Shortall, Iarnrod Éireann said it had no plan to automate these level crossings in the short to medium term.

The Chairperson of the Tipperary Social Democrats, Brendan Guckian, said: “It is imperative that that there is increased investment in rural public transport. The Ballybrophy-Nenagh-Limerick railway line offers a great opportunity to significantly enhance the availability of public transport in the north Tipperary region, strengthening its links to Limerick and Dublin.”

Currently, the line only operates two services each way, Monday to Saturday, between Ballybrophy and Limerick with a single service each way on Sunday. There is also a weekday morning service from Nenagh to Limerick.

Mr Guckian added: “By not aligning services with the timing of commutes and by providing such a low number of services, it is no wonder the number of passengers on this line remains low. It’s almost as though this service has been set up to fail, but it cannot be allowed to fail. Investment is urgently needed.”

Iarnrod Éireann's 2027 strategic plan identifies investment in the rail network as being central in helping Ireland reach its climate action targets. It is also targeting enhanced commuting options to regional cities.

Mr Guckian added: “This is very disappointing news for many people in north Tipperary who were living in hope of improved services for the area. The Tipperary Social Democrats are calling on the Minister for Transport to push for innovative solutions to greatly improve rural public transport because it is clear that such ambition is currently lacking.”