Eamonn McCann - The threat to our rail link

There's no doubt it enjoys some of the most wonderful scenery of any railway journey - but has it got a future?
There's no doubt it enjoys some of the most wonderful scenery of any railway journey - but has it got a future?

I must have missed the complaints and protests of the City of Culture crowd at the delay in relaying the Derry-Coleraine rail-line. All those promises that the city would have a rail connection to be proud of – or at least not to be ashamed of – in time for the 2013 wing-ding have turned out to be worthless.

It was confirmed last week to Martin Melaugh of the rail lobby Into The West that NO money has been allocated towards the relay of the line in the current four-year spending period. In the meantime, a make-do-and-mend operation will, it is hoped, keep the trains clanking slowly along the track.

Some “refurbishment” work to the Bann Bridge at Coleraine may be undertaken – probably involving the closure of the entire line, leaving Derry with no rail connection at all for the duration.

If you were planning for the final closure of the city’s last rail link, this is how you’d go about it.

Read more from Eamonn McCann in the Journal every Tuesday