U-turn on Sunday Bus Station closure in Armagh welcomed

Thursday, 6 July 2017

A LOCAL Assembly Member has welcomed the decision taken by Translink not to close the bus station in Armagh City on a Sunday.

Newry and Armagh DUP representative William Irwin - who was speaking after the news was relayed to him by manager Gerry Darcy - said it was "very welcome for the people of Armagh City." "I was alarmed when I learned that a decision was being taken by Translink to close the centre in Armagh on a Sunday and I had a number of calls from people who were concerned by this move and what it would mean," Mr Irwin told the Ulster Gazette.

"Armagh City relies on its public transport, both for people visiting the city and folk travelling from the city to other locations for work, study and indeed for tourism.

"To have the bus centre closed on a Sunday would have been detrimental," he said.

Mr Irwin said he is relieved the new manager in Armagh, Gerry Darcy and his colleague Inspector Keith Wilson had stopped off at his offices yesterday (Monday) whilst passing through and were able to bring news that the Sunday closure decision has now been postponed and the station will remain open on a Sunday.

"I understand that in future any potential decisions will not be taken without full consultation and I will certainly be against any future moves to reduce services in Armagh City. However for the meantime it is very much welcomed that the centre will remain accessible full time," Mr Irwin added.

At last week's ABC council meeting, local councillors were united in their opposition to the decision and had vowed to seek a meeting with Translink chiefs in an effort to reverse the decision, which was described by many as a 'blow for Armagh'.

The Ulster Gazette had first revealed last month that the bus station was set to be closed each Sunday from July 2, after Translink confirmed the decision had been made as part of a "drive to deliver value for money".

At the time, the announcement was met with much opposition especially by trade union Unite, who warned it would have a devastating impact on all bus users, particularly the elderly and disabled, as well as Translink employees.


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