Sinn Fein TD Brian Stanley says people using the Borris in Ossory, Castletown, Mountrath route to Portlaoise are still awaiting the full replacement bus service they were promised since last April.
Brian Stanley says that this service was drastically reduced when JJ Kavanagh’s company withdrew their service from Roscrea to Portlaoise.
He said: “This has caused huge inconvenience for the communities in Mountrath, Castletown, Borris in Ossory in particular.
“The national Transport Authority (NTA) promised at that time to provide comprehensive timetables 7 days per week on this route. However, this has not happened, and a partial service provided by Local link and Slieve Bloom Coaches provide a limited service.
“There are huge gaps in the service including the lack of early morning service to get people to work or to early appointments to Portlaoise and Dublin.
“The earliest bus arrives in Portlaoise at 9 am. This leaves workers and students trying to get connecting buses to colleges without public transport options in the morning.
“Similarly, in the evening time the last bus leaves Portlaoise at 6.20 pm Monday to Friday. This service fails to meet the needs of commuters along the route who require a late evening service.
“At weekends the availability of public transport from Roscrea to Portlaoise is almost non existent as there are only 3 services per day each way provided.
“We have been consistently making representations on this to the NTA to provide a more realistic service. If we are serious about getting people onto public transport and reducing car usage, then the least that must be done is to ensure a reasonable bus service along main routes like this.
“I am now demanding the NTA and the Department of Transport to provide a proper service to the people of Mountrath, Castletown and Borris in Ossory.
“I am aware that there are supposed to be plans in progress for an extended timetable and this now needs to be brought on stream as soon as possible.”