‘Ask Irish Rail to talk to council on its plan’

Things got hot in the chamber when the final order of business came up.

This was when Enniscorthy Cllr Johnny Mythen waded into Cllr Ger Carthy’s territory in a motion about the rail line from Rosslare Europort to Gorey.

Cllr Mythen called on the remaining members in the chamber to support his call for a member of Irish Rail to address the council on its current and future plans for the rail link and the plans they have for the development of the port post Brexit.

‘For those of you here, thank you very much for staying,’ Cllr Mythen said, addressing the half empty chamber, as around half of his peers had vacated it some 20 minutes earlier, either for the beach or for the Fianna Fáil convention.

Cllr Mythen said there are still rumoured plans to close the rail line.

‘As councillors we can’t allow this to happen. We don’t know what is coming down the line with Brexit, especially for the farming community.’

Cllr Carthy said: ‘I am delighted Sinn Féin have come to the table. I represent the majority of workers in Iarnrod Eireann and Rosslare Europort.’

Cllr Ó Suilleabháin said he attended worker protests in Rosslare 20 years ago, prompting the Our Lady’s Island man to say: ‘My father was down there for 50 years ago. We are representing the people. You don’t talk to me about Rosslare Europort!’

CEO Tom Enright brought some cool thought to proceedings, saying: ‘There is no doubt that there needs to be much greater focus on Rosslare Europort.’

He said the line’s future will only be secured when Iarnrod Eireann invest in it, saying coastal erosion is having a big impact on parts of the route.

Mr Enright said Rosslare Europort’s development is critical, not only for Wexford, but for the region and country as a whole.

Mr Enright said New Ross port is going to come into the council’s ownership, adding that properly functioning ports are hugely important for the region, as is Waterford Airport, as a driver of the local economy.

Gorey Guardian