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Destructix 27-01-2013 01:57

Nenagh loses underused train service
 
From The Nenagh Guardian

Quote:

Nenagh loses underused train service
By Simon O’Duffy
Iarnród Éireann has discontinued an early morning train service on the Limerick-Ballybrophy line as part of a new timetable that came into effect last Sunday.
The 05.05 Limerick-Dublin service, which stopped in Nenagh at 06.04, Cloughjordan (06.23) and Roscrea (06.43), has now been axed along with the 16.05 Limerick-Ballybrophy and 18.20 Ballybrophy-Limerick via Nenagh services. The move reduces the number of Nenagh-Dublin train options (via Ballybrophy) back to just two each way per day.
“Use it or lose it” was the mantra from local campaigners when the early morning service was introduced in March 2012. But the service, which along with the other two loss-making routes was costing €1,000 per day to operate, did not attract enough users and so has been withdrawn.
In a statement this week the Nenagh Rail Partnership (NRP) criticised Iarnrón Éireann, which the local group claimed did not make the early morning route attractive to commuters.
The partnership welcomed Iarnrón Éireann’s advertisement of faster train services on the Ballybrophy line, PRO Dr Duncan Martin pointing out that weekday evening passengers from Dublin will arrive 25 minutes earlier than in 2012, whereas weekday morning passengers to Dublin will save eight minutes.
However Dr Martin was disappointed with the loss of the early morning service, which he stressed was not proposed or pressed for by the NRP, which was not even consulted by Iarnród Éireann in its introduction.
“The failure of the commuter service was probably inevitable given the absence of a well-planned campaign to attract new users,” Dr Martin stated.
“Iarnród Éireann launched the service with an over-ambitious timetable (which simply did not work), extra-slow trains (with unnecessary delays of up to half an hour), an unhelpful fare structure, little or no consultation or market research, minimal advertising and none of the bold marketing needed to change habits and challenge misperceptions.”
Dr Martin said the launch week of the service was marred by late running in both directions, and although the departure times were amended to ensure timely arrival, this only made the train even slower.
“The weekday evening trains also suffered from unacceptable delays and late running - every night - due to an unworkable timetable that set impossible targets,” he stated.
“The total delay (scheduled and unscheduled) was usually half an hour or more: as demoralising for staff as it was for passengers. Inevitably, new users soon turned back to their cars.”
Dr Martin criticised Iarnród Éireann for failing to introduce smarter scheduling and fare structures, and said the early morning service was introduced prematurely.
“The partnership’s pressure for highimpact introductory fare offers (e.g. three monthly seasons for the price of one) was ignored. So too was our letter to Iarnród Éireann pointing out that the service would surely fail if it was not commenced in advance of an intensive multi-media publicity campaign. Instead, advertising was minimal, unimaginative, ineffectual - and far too late.
“The result was low passenger numbers from the outset. This soon attracted negative coverage in the media and accelerated the downward spiral to withdrawal of the service.”
Dr Martin said the NRP would nevertheless continue to work with Iarnród Éireann to develop the Ballybrophy line, and he encouraged anyone who would like to support the partnership to email duncanj  martin@eircom.net  .
A spokesperson for Iarnród Éireann said the new timetabling has been introduced to prioritise faster journey times and reduce operating costs while maintaining customer service levels as far as possible.
“The timetable was introduced after a public consultation period and was approved by the National Transport Authority,” the spokesperson said.
“We are in ongoing consultation with Nenagh Rail Partnership and have a cohesive regional marketing plan, aimed at attracting more customers to regional services; however we are ever mindful of costs.
“The Limerick-Ballybrophy line is very lightly used and the early bird service that was introduced did not attract sufficient numbers of customers to make it sustainable.”
Meanwhile at a meeting of North Tipperary Co Council this week, Cllr John Hogan (FF) said the loss of train services locally has left commuters with no alternative transport option other than the road. People can no longer get from Templemore to Dublin on time for work anymore because of the cutbacks on the Dublin-Cork line, he said.
Cllr Hogan also called on Iarnród Éireann to review its fares, describing the €48 Thurles-Dublin return fare as excessive compared to what is charged in other European countries.
“Pensioners are the only people using trains; no one else can afford it,” Cllr Hogan said.

Inniskeen 27-01-2013 08:23

Nice to have a bit of levity in these otherwise fairly miserable times.

Quote:

“We are in ongoing consultation with Nenagh Rail Partnership and have a cohesive regional marketing plan ......

Mark Gleeson 27-01-2013 11:56

This is what happens when politicians play trains

The timetable was about as good as could be offered
Fares were 9.99 single each way
Given the mass press exposure I don't think there is anyone in North Tipp who didn't know about it

As usual the NRP crew seem to be living on a different planet

Sealink 27-01-2013 14:22

Walk on fare €48 Thurles to Dublin is amazing value.
Or maybe walk-on UK fares are so outrageously high anything looks like a bargain!

Mark Gleeson 27-01-2013 14:55

Well you ain't got much choice in Thurles, no direct bus to Cork or Dublin and Limerick isn't much fun

Destructix 27-01-2013 18:05

Quote:

Originally Posted by Sealink (Post 70677)
Walk on fare €48 Thurles to Dublin is amazing value.
I maybe walk-on UK fares are so outrageously high anything looks like a bargain!

Not really, it gives other towns and cities nearby an unfair advantage. In other stations like Waterford the walk on fare is less than €30. True Thurles has a better train service than Waterford but this is a city with a comprehensive bus services. Thurles and Templemore aren't served by Bus Éireann so people without cars have no choice but to pay it. The day saver fares that used to be only €37 return if bought before 11am are gone too.

jacko 27-01-2013 21:12

that FF Cllr Hogan is off the wall suggesting that you cant get from Templemore to Dublin in time for work

Two services get you there!

Dept 06:38 Arr 08:05
Dept 07:33 Arr 08:55

Thomas J Stamp 28-01-2013 16:03

i had to read that NRP statement a few times, and in its total re-writing of everything that was said by them in connection with this service it takes some beating.

this was the most talked about, most publicised and most unwanted train serivce in his history of tipperary north riding. to decry Irish Rails publicity when NRP were very busy publicising it themselves is just to ignore reality. If offered for free nobody else would have used it. At €10 it was virutally free, considering that your tickets had to be brought to your station for you to pick up if you were in one of the stations that hadnt the facilities.

there is so much that can be pointed out as being wrong in that article that even I cant be bothered doing it, as life is too short. Mark sums it up a lot better than I.

In relation to John Hogan... well, John is a mate of mine so I wont play the man too hard, but really, we kept a service that gets us into Heuston as best as you can. i dont see the real problem here.

Destructix 10-02-2013 16:29

O'Shea "Takes Exception" To Kelly Train Remarks
 
From the Tipperary Star

Quote:

Published on Sunday 10 February 2013 14:44

TEMPLEMORE town councillor Jim O’Shea told the council’s January meeting that he “took exception” to comments by Junior Minister for Public Transport Alan Kelly in relation to the reduction of train services through the town in the latest Irish Rail timetable.

Last December, Cllr O’Shea raised concerns about the threat to rail services, telling councillors Irish Rail proposed to cut five services from the town.

“I am secretary of the Train Users Group. He didn’t consult with the train group. Who did he talk to? I take execption to what he said in the paper. I take issue with what he said,” Cllr O’Shea told the meeting. The Fianna Fail councillor also took issue with a comment from Irish Rail that his comments on train services being reduced from 17 to 12 was “speculation”.

“I want to know who spoke on behalf of Irish Rail. Irish Rail said my remarks were speculation. I took my information from their draft timetable. Was that timetable just speculation?” he asked.

Cllr O’Shea believed were it not his and the council’s early intervention, Irish Rail would have cut five services from the town.

Mayor Michael C Ryan said he was inviting Deputy Kelly to come to a council meeting to update them on train services from Templemore.

Destructix 16-02-2013 01:12

1 Attachment(s)
When talk about closing this line comes up again in the near future NRP, Alan Kelly whoever can't say that Iarnród Éireann didn't advertise locally about the services on this line.
http://www.railusers.ie/forum/attach...d=136097692 8

Inniskeen 16-02-2013 08:16

Quote:

Originally Posted by Destructix (Post 70855)
When talk about closing this line comes up again in the near future NRP, Alan Kelly whoever can't say that Iarnród Éireann didn't advertise locally about the services on this line.
http://www.railusers.ie/forum/attach...d=136097692 8

Which Nenagh line services have nice ICRs and refreshment services then ?

Destructix 16-02-2013 20:59

The train it meets at 8:45 in Ballybrophy is a 22k Limerick-Dublin. 2800 from Nenagh-Ballybrophy. As uncomfortable the 2800 are it could be worse. Those 2700's the rotten smell of the heaters and they were like sitting on a mechanical bull.

Thomas J Stamp 18-02-2013 13:02

Quote:

Originally Posted by Destructix (Post 70855)
When talk about closing this line comes up again in the near future NRP, Alan Kelly whoever can't say that Iarnród Éireann didn't advertise locally about the services on this line.
http://www.railusers.ie/forum/attach...d=136097692 8

ah aure thats nothing, all the posters IE gave out to Roscrea shops to display in November are still up, all showing the now gone 0505 ex-limerick.


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