Warm Reception for West on
Track at Oireachtas joint Committee
November 13th 2003
Representatives from the West on Track community campaign
for the re-opening of the Western Rail Corridor were
afforded a warm welcome by a packed gallery of T.D.'s and
Senators when they attended a sitting of the Oireachtas
Joint Committee on Transport on Wednesday November 12th.
The delegation was led by Fr. Mícheál
MacGréil and included Collr Michael McGreal of
Roscommon a member of the Monitoring Committee of the
National Development Plan, and by Martin Cunniffe and
Colmán Ó Raghallaigh of the West on track
Steering Committee. A detailed powerpoint presentation was
followed by a series of contributions and questions from
members of the committee, who expressed strong support for
the campaign to re-open the Western rail line as a major
infrastructural development for the region.
The session which lasted three hours in total was chaired
by Deputy John Ellis of Sligo-Leitrim. Among the Deputies
and Senators who participated were Denis Naughten ,
Róisín Shorthall , Peter Power, Tom Morrisey,
Timmy Dooley, Marian Harkin, Jim Higgins, Éamon Ryan
and Gerry Cowley.
Other presentations were made by the Shannon Rail project
promoting a link to the re-opened Western Rail Corridor and
by Iarnród Éireann who were questioned
severely by Deputies and Senators about their perceived lack
of enthusiasm for the Western Rail Corridor and inaccuracies
in their presentation.
A spokesman for West on Track said they were well pleased
with the day's proceedings and felt that the campaign had
moved into a new phase. They were particularly pleased that
the Minister for Transport, Mr. Seamus Brennan TD had stated
in an interview with MWRFM that he was very much in favour
of re-opening the line and was willing to meet the group and
visit the line in person.
He added that it was also significant Mr. Joe Meagher of
Iarnród Éireann had confirmed that the company
had the capacity to re-open the line if instructed by the
Minister. The spokesman added that they had agreed to meet
with the Iarnród Éireann delegation again in
the West within the next few weeks.
A full report of the proceeding of the committee will be
issued next week by West on Track and a copy will be posted
on their website at www.westontrack.com.