Budget cuts: Ulsterbus to Drumahoe effectively scrapped

Ulsterbus
Ulsterbus

Ulsterbus is effectively scrapping the Drumahoe bus as part of cost-cutting plans but says rejigged Claudy, Eglinton and Dungiven services will continue to cater for passengers travelling to town from the village.

Translink announced details of a range of planned bus and rail service changes that will commence from August 30 (rail) and September 1 (bus/coach).

In Londonderry the FY14, which currently runs between Foyle Street to the Faughan Valley School site via Glendermott Road, Altnagelvin and Daly’s Brae six times a day in both directions, is to be cut to just one service a day from September.

Drumahoe passengers using FY14 are being advised to use Ulsterbus 147, 148 and 152 services from the city to Claudy, Dungiven and Eglinton which Translink says have “been retimed to offer regular services throughout the day.”

The transport authority also confirmed that FY14 services will still be maintained at 12.45pm from Foyle Street Bus Station and 1pm from Drumahoe.

Bus passengers in Londonderry are also advised that geographic coverage of the city network has been maintained and that there are service frequency adjustments and also a reallocation of resources on some routes to better cater for passenger demand.

Translink will hold a public information session in Foyle Street Bus Station on Monday 24th August, 10am – 2pm, to assist passengers with planning their journeys.

The company blamed budget cuts for the changes saying they are are part of Translink’s overall plans to reduce costs due to the significant reduction in public funding in 2015/16.

Translink’s Ciarán Rogan said: “The service changes have been made based on feedback from our customers and a range of stakeholders and will enable us to continue providing services that are accessible and efficient while providing the best value for money.

“We have worked hard to minimise the impact of the reduced funding on front line services and have been able to protect the geographic coverage of the network albeit with some reduced frequency on some services.

“We would now encourage our customers to familiarise themselves with any changes to their specific services in case they need to adapt their usual travel plans, especially as a number of services have been retimed and there are also some Ulsterbus and Metro bus stop location changes in Belfast City Centre,” said Ciarán.

The commencement of service changes follows a 3 month hold to allow additional time for discussion and agreement between Translink, Unite Trade Union and the Minister for Regional Development.