History will be made next Sunday when Tipperary fans from towns and villages along the Ballybrophy railway line will be given the option for the first time ever of taking a train to Croke Park to for an All-Ireland final.
And for the first time, there will be no changing trains at Ballybrophy as the train will be able to go directly on to the main line.
The Junior Minister for Public Transport, Alan Kelly, has ensured that Tipperary supporters will have the option of attending the final next using the train.
Deputy Kelly asked Irish Rail to put on special trains across Tipperary for the match. Trains will now run on the all lines servicing Tipperary towns and villages.
“I am delighted with the services Irish Rail are providing. There are special trains on all the lines and they will bring supporters directly to and from Dublin for the match. This is an excellent service and means supporters can go and enjoy the match without the hassle of driving, parking etc. Travelling by train in comfort is a great way to ensure an enjoyable day,” he said.
“Irish Rail have put on services on the Waterford / Dublin, Cork / Dublin, Limerick / Dublin and for the first time the Ballybrophy / Dublin lines. These will call at all Tipperary stations and then head directly to Dublin in a timely fashion for the match.
“I would encourage passengers to book early to avoid disappointment and also because extra demand may see additional carriages added. I would like to thank Irish Rail for supporting my request and I look forward to meeting with fellow supporters in Nenagh station on Sunday morning and, hopefully, enjoying a Tipperary win on Sunday evening”.
His appeal for people to use the trains was supported by Cllr Virginia O’Dowd, Mayor of Nenagh and chair of Nenagh Rail Patrnership.
She welcomed the decision by Iarnrod Eireann to put a special train on the Nenagh line for this Sunday’s All-Ireland hurling final in Croke Park.
“We have never had a match special serving towns along the Ballybrophy line,” she said. “I urge fans to take the train and to show their support for the line as well as their team.”
Mayor O’Dowd said that Nenagh Rail Partnership had been calling for match specials for many years.
“The service will be direct, with no change at Ballybrophy,” she pointed out.
The Labour councillor also said that the fares were very reasonable. “The return fare for an adult is €29.50, with child tickets costing €15.
The advantage of taking the train is you don’t have to worry about parking around Croke Park, traffic and you can sit back and relax,” she said.
The train will leave Birdhill at 9am, Nenagh at 9.33am, Roscrea at 10.12am, arriving in Heuston station at 12.01pm. The return train leaves Heuston at 8pm.
She pointed out that fans booking this special service from Nenagh branch line stations can collect their tickets from Friday, September 2, at the stations where they are starting their journey.
Mayor O’Dowd thanked Iarnrod Eireann for their response to have a match special, and said that she looked forward to many more specials on the line, including for rugby matches in Dublin and major Heineken Cup games in Thomond Park.
For further information and to book your seat, visit www.irishrail.ie Use Thurles as the station listed for collection as tickets will be brought from there to the stations along the Ballybrophy line for collection.