Sunday, 17 October 2010

Dublin-Dunboyne rail line Coolmine flypast OK with Barry Kenny

Does Barry Kenny, spokesman for Irish Rail, ever take the train to work? I can only imagine if he does, it is not from Coolmine Station, where he can stand on a miserable, windswept platform and watch the town-bound trains roar through the station without stopping.

A few weeks back, Irish Rail introduced the new Dunboyne to Dublin service and I – and I imagine other Dublin 15 residents – looked forward to some large gaps in the timetable being filled, bringing the service closer to DART levels of frequency. It never happened, though, as the new trains ignore all the intermediate stations, once they leave Clonsilla.

According to the Northside People West, Kenny thinks this is OK, despite local TD Leo Varadkar estimating that stopping at Coolmine, Castleknock, Phoenix Park, Ashtown, Broombridge and Drumcondra would only add four minutes onto the total journey time, off-peak.

I’m not quite sure about that figure myself, but surely if Irish Rail is going to the trouble and (public) expense of providing a branch-off line to Dunboyne, buying additional engines and rolling-stock, and training and employing new drivers, it would make economic sense to maximize the potential of the investment by taking on as many fee-paying passengers as possible?

But no. Irish Rail, in its profound wisdom, decided that the trains would pass through Coolmine – the second busiest station on the line, according to an Irish Rail employee I chatted with – without stopping.

Maybe if Kenny had a talk with Ryanair’s Michael O’Leary it might prove instructive to him, and be of benefit of the train-travelling public of west Dublin?

Sadly, it looks like yet another example of a State-owned body being run arseways.

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ANNa said...

I recommended this blog to 2 friends- both surprised me by saying they found it too negative...all i think this site is for burying gombeenism , not to praise it...and we are all familiar with the irish tendency for needless self congratulation, EG, 'Our public services are rubbish, but we have the best pubs in the world!! cheer up and don't be so anti Irish, Bula bas!,,,etc....~
SO I DO think it is POSITIVE to highlight this nonsense...the station they are by passing is the BUSIEST ON THE LINE!!! i am currently on holiday, 1st I went with my frind to Berlin, now we are back at his base in Prague , 2 cities with superb transport, re story above:WWUGI?? ANS - OII.SIGH.

The Gombeen Man said...

Cheers Anna. Maybe there are too many "positive" people in Ireland, and perhaps that's the problem?

Lew said...

Why on earth do they do things like that, it just doesn't make sense to me.
Maybe they might be saving a "little" fuel by not slowing down and stopping but the profit they'd make would surely be worth it, and as you said the extra time to the journey isnt worth mentioning.

Maybe they should just sell the railways in Ireland to private companies who would actually try and maximise profit by making sure more people used it.

The only problem I can see with doing that would be they'd put prices up, and that cannot happen so hopefully they'd put a clause in the contract with maximum ticket prices in it.

One of the things I love about Iriash railways whenever I visit (and used to love as a kid) was it was affordable.
Tickets are not dear compared to other countries.

Here in England the prices sre stupidly high, they complain that enough people dont use them yet if they had some common sense they'd realise that if they lowered the prices more people would use them, hence more profit.

Anonymous said...

Contrary to popular myth and the image portrayed of the Irish overseas we are not the happy go lucky wild Irish of lore. We are, in fact, a meek people who do what we are told by governments up to their necks in nepotism and cronism. I would go as far as to say that the Irish people are possibly the most easily manipulated people in all of Europe. The North Koreans are probably impressed by our government's tactics! In any other modern state (see France and even Greece!)such gombeen rulers would be out on their arses and/or behind bars yet we accept it lying down. "Sure don't rock the boat Paidin, it'll be alright tomorrow."

Dakota said...

Oh yeaaah, oh yeah, that makes sense GM. You see GM those nice people at Irish Rail, they don't give a toss about the passengers, its all about implementing a system. Whether or not this system works, is beside the point. I don't or can't understand such ingenious logic (this term is used very sparingly here) but I'm sure it makes sense to some.

Also Anon, very true. In a way it could be viewed as a positive thing, this strange inertia, but then I remind myself, this is Ireland, and equilibrium is restored.

The Gombeen Man said...

@ Anon 10:10. Yep... I never fail to emit a cynical chuckle whenever I hear this guff about being a nation of rebels and all the rest. A nation of unquestioning half-wits, more like. Present company excepted, of course!

@ Dakota. Great link. Scandalous. I really think a lot of the people in management in these sectors are living in a bubble. Reality never seems to impinge.

Dakota said...

As you mention reality and management GM, just to give you an instance of one particular individuals experience. I was only talking to an aquaintance of mine from the UK, last night, and I happend to mention to him about the wonderful state of the rail system in the ROI. He said the rail system, what about the abysmal bus service in and around Dublin?? Now GM, I know myself the insanity which is commonly known as the bus “service" in Dublin, but it’s always refreshing to hear it from another - especially someone that never used it before.
GM he was over here for a holiday in August and decided to use the bus one particular day, for a relatively short trip. Anyway, in the course of the journey he seemingly asked the driver a quick question about the route, only to get a reply which was nothing short of vitriol (nice hey?). He told me he was literally mesmerised by the tone and attitude, a completely new experience for him! He also said they are the most obnoxious shower he ever came across (this is a guy who uses public transport, tube and bus everyday in London). Needless to say, he won’t be using anything resembeling public transport, LOL, here again. I told him, basically thats the way it is here and that I know of two elderly people from the states who won't visit Dublin because of state of the public transport (not to mention the attitude of some). I actually felt intrinsically embarresed.....I really wonder do any of these managers or planners etc, ever sit on a bus or train in this country/city? If they did, would it be as bad as it is? It really is the most basic of all human activity within a society or economy (whatever it is here now) GM, to expect the ability to move around with relative ease. It really is a backwater with attitude....

The Gombeen Man said...

They can't possibly, D. If the PTB used public transport here they would see just how bad it was. Then we've got integrated ticketing... not! Bloody hell, how difficult can it be?

Ponybus said...

@D - a similar donkey in my case some years ago on one of my visits to Ireland. There was an airport bus - a normal double decker that went from O'Connell St to the airport for a flat fare of Euro 4.50. I only had a five and the driver told me that he'd give me my change later, a promise he made to a number of passengers, I noticed, as we picked up more travellers along the way. You know how this story ends.... I know it's only a stingy 50 cents but watching him scarper off the bus at the airport without the slightest intention of giving anyone their change left the bitterest taste. What a sleeveen.