Local Link is an invaluable resource for connecting our communities in Cork, said Minister for Foreign Affairs and Cork South Central TD Simon Coveney.
Local Link provides both demand-responsive, door-to-door services on request, as well as scheduled bus services on fixed routes here in Cork. The services are run on behalf of the NTA’s ‘Transport for Ireland’, by 17 groups throughout the country and are funded by the Department of Transport, Tourism and Sport.
Minister for Community and Rural Affairs Michael Ring officially launched the Local Link brand at the National Ploughing Championships and said: “Local Link is in many ways the unsung hero of our public transport system and an invaluable resource for us locally. In launching the Local Link brand, we want to make sure people all over Ireland are aware that these fantastic local bus services exist, and that the work being done at local level. The message is also that Local Link is very much open for business for everybody, including people going to work, families, students, tourists and visitors.
Local Link is enabling people in remote rural areas to go shopping, get to hospital appointments and avail of services in their local towns and villages. With over 1.7 million such journeys taking place last year, it is providing an invaluable service to rural Ireland. The creation of the Local Link brand is an effort to increase awareness of the service as it continues to grow.
“I would like to very much welcome the move to bring rural transport services under the Local Link banner. I would also like to acknowledge the fact that thanks to Transport for Ireland and the National Transport Authority, these services have been going from strength to strength in rural areas across the country,” the Minister added.
The Rural Transport Programme came under the aegis of the Transport for Ireland in 2012. As a result of a restructuring programme which concluded in 2015, 17 Transport Coordination Units (TCUs) were formed to replace the 35 rural community transport groups that had previously existed.
The decision was then made to bring all these services under one brand, and to work with local operators to ensure that services were provided to a consistently professional standard, across the board. That brand is the Local Link brand.
Every year, Local Link
- Completes 1.7 million passenger journeys
- Provides 800,000 journeys for Free Travel Passengers, including 400,000 passengers who required assistance.
- Provides 230,000 service trips.
- Travels 11.2 million kilometres.
- Employs almost 900 drivers.