CONCERN has been expressed about future staffing levels at both Tullamore and Clara railway stations.
Local councillors have also complained about disability facilities, bridge problems and pedestrian access issues at the stations.
A meeting has now been sought between Iarnrod Eireann and Tullamore Municipal District to discuss staffing and other issues, councillors were informed at last Thursday’s meeting of the body.
Referring to the matter of the pedestrian gate at Tullamore station which had been raised at the February meeting of the body, Cathaoirleach, Cllr Declan Harvey said he “couldn’t believe that this small gate still isn’t open.”
“There is a path there for pedestrians . . . there’s no path at the main gate and it’s dangerous,” he stressed.
Added Cllr Harvey: “The small gate should be open as it always was and it should be left open.”
Cllr Tommy McKeigue noted the station has been cleaned up since the matter was aired by councillors at the February meeting.
Cllr Dervill Dolan stressed that staffing levels at the stations in both Clara and Tullamore needed to be protected and expanded over the coming years.
He stressed that both stations should be enhanced and developed in the future.
Cllr Harvey warned that he could see Tullamore becoming an unmanned station in years to come.
“If someone is out sick they have no one to replace them and the manager is based in Athlone,” he revealed.
He also raised the issue of the lift at the station and outlined the diffculties for people with disabilities when it was broken.
Cllr McKeigue noted that passengers often couldn’t purchase a ticket in Tullamore apart from doing so at the machine and had to walk through a different gate in Dublin to purchase one.
In Clara station, pointed out Cllr Dolan, the old bridge was in a dangerous situation and needed urgent attention.