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Unread 08-04-2013, 12:45   #1
laoisfan
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Default First train from Dublin to Cork (09:35)

Hi

Just curious...why is the first train from Dublin to Cork only arriving into Cork around 09:35 ?

I seem to recall many moons ago when I was in CIT that there were earlier train circa 08:00-08:35am.

Has demand dropped off that much?

It's a pity there is no service that gets in earlier.
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Unread 08-04-2013, 13:42   #2
Jamie2k9
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Wouldn't say that demand has dropped off but it was never there in the first place and it was fine to operate services lightly loaded back then.

I do think it would be good if the current 07.00 departed at 06.30 and arrived in Cork at 09.00.
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Unread 08-04-2013, 13:51   #3
laoisfan
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Well I was thinking perhaps if there was some way the first train could arrive in no later than say 8:30am - at least that way if you worked in the City Center or perhap Mahon Industrial Park ( cycle ), you would stand a chance.

9:35am is crazy to say the least.

I travel from Ballybrophy to Dublin (Park West) and am looking for options outside of Dublin, preferably where there is a train line. I would even consider driving the short distance down to Thurles to get the train the rest of the way.
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Unread 08-04-2013, 13:59   #4
Mark Gleeson
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This has been discussed before with Irish Rail, there isn't a business case currently to justify a 06:00 departure from Dublin, but the train ID A200 lies unused in expectation of this service running in the future.

There are plenty of trains from Mallow into Cork before 9am

Even in the good times the 07:00 service was rather quiet once past Limerick Junction, first class numbers used to be good which made it pay.


On paper a 06:00 would solve 4 problems

1. Dublin Cork arrive for a 9am start (08:30)
2. Dublin Limerick arrive for a 9am start (8:10 allowing time to get to UL, Plassey etc)
3. Limerick Cork arrive for a 9am start (08:30)
4. Charleville Cork for a 9am start (08:30)

A Charleville Cork service was tried but didn't attract the patronage required to continue
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Unread 08-04-2013, 14:05   #5
laoisfan
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Thanks Mark for the response, I suspected as much.

Fingers & toes crossed they may re-consider this option in the not too distant future!
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Unread 08-04-2013, 14:15   #6
comcor
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Wasn't Charleville-Cork only trialled for about a year? It tends to take more to build up patronage on a commuter service as people will make plans around it.

One thing that has happened in Cork since the Charleville experiment is much better connectivity of the train station. Back then, it was only really good for trips to the city centre or connections onto the Cobh line. Now, Midleton is also open and there are bus services to UCC and CIT (33K combined students) and Cork Airport (with 4K working there between the airport and the business park).
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Unread 08-04-2013, 14:21   #7
laoisfan
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I seemed to recall ( back in the 90s now boys....so go easy on me ) that there were a considerable number of students from both Thurles & Mallow who would get the train daily into Cork - no kidding you.

I'm just thinking....our 2nd largest city in the state and the 1st train gets in at 9:35am....crazy...

Fair enough...I understand there has to be a business justification...but nearly every 2nd recruiter that contacts me is based down in Cork and the position they are recruiting for is Cork as well.
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Unread 08-04-2013, 15:00   #8
comcor
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It's just the first train from Dublin that gets in for 9:35am. Any local commuter stations (incl Mallow) and Tralee, Killarney & Millstreet have services that will get you in for 8am, never mind 9am. In terms of the map that was produced by the CSO of commuting patters into Cork, the most useful rail change would be to add a stop in Banteer to the early Tralee service as it indicated that 25%-50% of the working population in the Banteer/Kanturk area was commuting into Cork City.
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Unread 08-04-2013, 21:44   #9
Inniskeen
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Quote:
Originally Posted by comcor View Post
It's just the first train from Dublin that gets in for 9:35am. Any local commuter stations (incl Mallow) and Tralee, Killarney & Millstreet have services that will get you in for 8am, never mind 9am. In terms of the map that was produced by the CSO of commuting patters into Cork, the most useful rail change would be to add a stop in Banteer to the early Tralee service as it indicated that 25%-50% of the working population in the Banteer/Kanturk area was commuting into Cork City.
First train from Tralee to Cork generally leaves Mallow with around 10 passengers. Main traffic flow on this service is towards Dublin.
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Unread 09-04-2013, 09:05   #10
comcor
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I'd believe that. For the vast majority of people the second train would also be early enough. The 7:29 departure from Mallow is even a bit early for local commuter traffic. Also the fact it has a different timetable on a Monday (presumably because there is demand in Kerry for a service that will get you into Dublin before 9am on the first day of the working week) doesn't make it a great option for regular commuters.

Still, I wouldn't have thought there's too much extra cost in a single extra stop in Banteer. It may also pick up Dublin-bound passengers.
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Unread 17-04-2013, 14:11   #11
dowlingm
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a few points:

First and with no disrespect intended to Mark, since it's not actually him who's responsible here, I don't think Irish Rail playing the business case card will do. We saw with the Alan Kelly Express where the service train ended up in a different slot from where it was initially planned both leaving Limerick and entering the GDA. Now they are throwing 6 euro return tickets to Limerick from Nenagh around on Saturdays. Where the business case is for all that was beats me. Obviously there might be scheduling diceyness around LTC given the number of train entering service but otherwise one could operate a similar timing to one of the mid-day trains:
  • Dublin 0600
  • Thurles 0709 (connect to Limerick dep 0740 - a long wait I admit but I'm trying to do this in a low impact way)
  • Charleville 0745
  • Mallow 0800 (taking over existing service which judging by timetable appears to be deadheaded up there, or a stored 2326 arr?)
  • Cork 0830
Now, when the business case was initially drawn up doubtless there was an intent that the Mk4 equipment would be standard Dublin-Cork. We've now seen enough 22K x 3 sets on midday runs to know that's no longer Holy Writ. As for Charleville, that service as I recall was commuter stock sent from Cork? Can't remember if it deadheaded or whether there was some revenue on the northbound. In any event an 0745 departure of an inbound revenue service has got to be better economics wise and a 45min journey Charleville-Cork would compare very favourably to the competing 0715 75min bus service.

The arriving 22K could then take over a Cork diagram normally handled by based stock with a Cork 22K going the other way later or (whisper it) doing a similar late express run
  • Cork 2120 (Cobh connection arr 2054, Midleton connection arr 2108)
  • Mallow 2141
  • Limerick Junction 2216 (connection time Cork-Limerick drops from 1h18m to 18m, with a 2145 dep/2213 arr Limerick-Limerick Junction taking over 2238 dep Limerick Junction-Limerick and also providing a closer Limerick-Cork connect to the southbound 2234)
  • Portlaoise 2302
  • Heuston 2352
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Unread 17-04-2013, 14:51   #12
Mark Gleeson
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As we all know economic considerations do not apply where a government ministers constituency is involved, the loss on Nenagh is increasing where as the loss elsewhere is decreasing.

We feel there is a good case for a 06:00 service but every year we get told the business case doesn't stack up.

The return working can simply be coupled onto the back of one of the up ICR services, the traffic flow mid day tends to be towards Dublin.

But as posted previously the train ID for the 06:00 is reserved in the system
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Unread 17-04-2013, 16:15   #13
Jamie2k9
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Quote:
We feel there is a good case for a 06:00 service but every year we get told the business case doesn't stack up.
If they just put an 06.00 on for a few months and scrapped the 08.00 for example or even replace the 07.00 service whichever has lower loads and costs wouldn't increase and they could test the market.

Quote:
As we all know economic considerations do not apply where a government ministers constituency is involved, the loss on Nenagh is increasing where as the loss elsewhere is decreasing.
I know you probaly can't post much detail about there finances but do you know if the WRC is increasing or decreasing losses and with the new timetable and improvments to Heuston services is this being reflected in passenger numbers or the current ones just paying higher fares to close the gaps.
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Unread 15-08-2013, 14:16   #14
laoisfan
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Irish Rail planning Dublin-Cork 'business express'

Iarnrod Eireann is planning to introduce a fast express business train next year between Dublin and Cork as part of efforts to get potential customers out of their cars and on to rail services.

The company is in direct competition with the motorway which has led to huge improvements in journey times.

However, Iarnrod Eireann chief executive David Franks said that a fast train, where customers also have access to free Wi-Fi allowing them to work on the move, could help entice more people to the service.

"We should be able to get people to Cork much more quickly to compete (with the motorway) and that means we need to improve line speeds," he told the Irish Independent.

"The vision I've got is to try and get the journey time down to Cork to two hours. Cork is critical because we're connecting the two major cities.

"What we've done at the moment is play with timetables, taking stops out of a service which is yielding improvements of up to 20 minutes. We're exploring the opportunity of a fast business train, in the short term, which will be more or less an express service."

Timetable changes introduced earlier this year on services between Dublin and Cork, Galway, Waterford, Limerick, Westport and Kerry have already resulted in drops of up to 20 minutes on some routes.

This is largely due to a more targeted maintenance programme across the rail network in recent years, particularly with the removal of speed restrictions on sections of the line at Kildare, Portarlington and Limerick Junction.

This allows trains to travel at a maximum of 160kmh 40kmh faster than motorways and removing stops from the service would help reduce journey times to just two hours. The new service is expected to be introduced next year.

Mr Franks said that he also wanted to operate more trains to Belfast, where there is currently only a train every other hour, and speed up services between the capital and Galway and Westport which have been "very good performers".

The AA said that a road journey between Heuston Station in Dublin and Kent Station in Cork takes two hours, 53 minutes.

By rail, the journey is between 2.30 and 2.45 hours, and it is hoped that further journey time reductions will help grow numbers.

The removal of further speed restrictions on other sections of the network are also planned, but a detailed timetable for the works and sourcing funding are still being worked on.
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Unread 15-08-2013, 15:26   #15
comcor
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Well, if they could get the journey time under 2 hours, a 6am train wouldn't be necessary as the 7am would get in early enough.

However, 2 hours Dublin-Cork is something I don't expect to see in my lifetime, considering people have been talking about it for 20 years and services don't seem to be getting any faster.
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Unread 16-08-2013, 02:52   #16
dowlingm
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I think IE should stop overpromising and start overdelivering. Not sure how Galway/Westport is going to get faster unless Killonan-Nenagh track is pulled up and laid as double track Portarlington-Athlone.
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