Two representatives from Bus Éireann presented a late change to the agenda  at September’s East Cork Municipal District meeting. Following over a year of failed requests to attend a meeting the arrivals had not been flagged beforehand but, fearful they might wake up to find it was all a dream, the councillors and executive welcomed them with warmth and a little wonderment, writes Christy Parker.

The transport company was represented by Services Manager Tim O’Leary and Assistant Services Manager Frances McCarthy.
One of the more intriguing inquiries put to the guests was why it was cheaper (€4.75) to travel from Waterford or Dungarvan to Cork than to do so from Youghal (€9.50). Mr O’Leary said what he had said nearly two years ago that it was “a promotional thing” of which Youghal was not a part but it was “being reviewed”. Youghal was not part of the promotion.

Setting the fares
The larger picture behind it all the emerged as Mr O’Leary explained that the Expressway part of the national bus service was a commercial entity of Bus Éireann who set the lower fares from Waterford to Cork.
The non-Expressway section was a PSO (Public Service Obligation) service managed by the National Transport Authority who set their own fares, which were more expensive. The PSO fares had nothing to do with Bus Éireann, he stressed and paying €9.50 from Youghal, Killeagh or Castlemartyr to Cork was a question for the NTA to answer. The issue will now be raised at county council level however, Cllr Mary Linehan-Foley said.

Meanwhile Cllr James O’Connor said the standard of bus service in east Cork wasn’t doing a lot to encourage people to leave their environmentally unfriendly cars at home.

Read more inside the latest issue of Youghal News.