Passenger growth on railway line welcomed

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The number of passengers using the Larne railway line has increased by 13 per cent since 2011/12, the Department of Regional Development has revealed.

The news was welcomed by DUP MLA for east Antrim Alastair Ross, who said NI Railways had worked hard to improve the infrastructure along the Larne Line in recent years.

“Coupled with the new train sets and park and ride facilities, taking the train rather than sitting in rush hour traffic has become more attractive,” Mr Ross added.

“It is also evident that many of those who use the train during the day are not heading to work but are supporting the economy by having lunch and shopping in towns across the rail network.

“Beyond the economic benefits of widening the customer catchment areas, Translink are also helping to increase the mobility of our older citizens and improving their social contacts. This has positive health benefits that should be built upon by both Translink and the Executive.”

“Some 2.5 million passenger journeys were made on the Larne Line over the last twelve months, a figure that would have seemed impossible just over a decade ago when campaigners and local politicians had to work hard to save the remaining railways.”