Cookstown bus closure unacceptable

Wednesday, 13 September 2017

A DECISION by Translink to downgrade services from Cookstown bus depot has been branded as "totally unacceptable".
The depot will now only operate from Monday to Friday with services now removed at the weekend.
The move comes just two years after Translink denied any plans to close the depot in the town.
A notice has been placed at the depot by Translink, stating it would be closed at the weekends with immediate effect and advising bus users to go to the bus shelter in Union Street instead.
Ulster Unionist Cookstown Councillor Trevor Wilson claimed it was another step towards downgrading services at the depot.
He also told the Courier he had been in contact with Translink but had received no response.
Cllr Wilson also stated his objection to there having been no prior contact from Translink with the Council about its plans.
He said: "This decision means Cookstown depot will be merely a bus stop at the weekend. For a major town this is totally unacceptable and I await a response from Translink with interest."
DUP MLA for Mid-Ulster, Keith Buchanan, has also expressed his objection to the development, saying Cookstown is the "main hub of Mid-Ulster" and saying he would be making contact with Translink chiefs as a matter of urgency.
Sinn Fein representatives, Cookstown Councillor John McNamee and Mid-Ulster MP Francie Molloy also indicated they were seeking a meeting with Translink officials.
A Translink spokesperson said the decision was made as part of its efforts to "deliver value for money" and will ensure it continues to "operate efficiently".
In a statement, they said: "As part of our drive to deliver value for money we continue to create efficiencies throughout the organisation, so we can continue to offer best value for our customers and continue to ensure we operate efficiently.
"As part of these efficiencies, Cookstown Bus Station will close at weekends. These changes help to reduce costs whilst maintaining services for our customers. Weekend services will now depart from the bus shelter directly outside the bus station."


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