Losing a lifeline

The loss of the Lough Swilly bus service to Inishowen has been deemed by locals as a “disaster” for the peninsula.

The company, which is 161 years old, will stop trading this weekend following the appointment of a liquidator. 80 jobs will be lost, the majority of which are in Donegal.

The service operates public buses between Derry and Buncrana, Carndonagh, Muff and Greencastle. It also ferries school children to and from school right across the peninsula. Many others use the service to travel to work and university or college in Derry.

Yesterday, Inishowen passengers travelling on the 11am bus from Buncrana said the peninsula was losing a “lifeline.”

Marie Breslin from Buncrana said the loss of the service would affect her entire family.

She said: “It would just be a total disaster for Inishowen.

“My son uses it for going to college and I was speaking to a man from Clonmany who works in Derry. He doesn’t know what he’s going to do. Neither do I, as I use it a couple of times a week.”

Delia McMonagle, originally from Clonmany but living in Buncrana, said: “It’s absolutely disgusting. That bus was packed when it left Buncrana. There was a crowd of kids coming from the special needs centre going up to the Bowling Alley. They need that bus to take them out on day trips. What will they do now?

“It is a lifeline for people going to their work or visiting Derry or the towns.

“How else do people get around if you don’t drive? Somebody will have to do something because they are really pulling the rug out from under people’s feet. It’s just scandalous.”