Laois Offaly TD Sean Fleming has slammed the National Transport Authority as having “no interest in the smaller towns in Laois” after more reductions in bus stops were announced last week.
Bus Éireann have revised their Dublin to Limerick Route 12, cutting out a number of stops at Mountrath, Castletown and Borris-in-Ossory, effective from October 14. There will now be eight daily stops each way in the three towns.
Dep Sean Fleming strongly criticised the service cuts.
“The number of people who use the bus service in Mountrath, Castletown and Borris in Ossory going to Portlaoise and Dublin and back has always been exceptionally high and many of these people will now be left stranded. There was no consultation whatsoever by Bus Eireann and many people are shocked at them making these changes with immediate effect,” he said.
“The last bus leaving Dublin at night for these locations is now 8.30pm as the 9.30pm and 10.30pm busses have now been taken off the route,” he said. Those buses have been moved directly to the motorway he says, “resulting in these towns being by-passed at these critical times”.
He criticised the National Transport Authority for giving Bus Eireann permission to revise the service.
“The NTA approved these changes behind closed doors without informing the public and without even asking Bus Eireann how many people were using these busses in these towns. Obviously the people in Dublin who make these decisions have no interest in the smaller local towns in Laois,” he said.
He asks that Bus Eireann restore at least one more early morning bus through Mountrath to Dublin, and a late night bus leaving Dublin.