Magilligan ferry should be supported
Sinn Fein MLA for East Derry, Francie Brolly has called for support for the Magilligan Ferry Service. The service supplies a valuable link between counties Donegal and Derry.
Speaking today Mr Brolly said:
"The Magilligan ferry supports and enhances both employment opportunities and tourism in both Donegal and Derry cutting the journey time between Inishowen and Co. Derry to 15 minutes.
"If anyone were to travel the same distance by car it would be a detour of at least 1 hour which if commuting each day for work is a significant amount of time.
"However there are grave concerns surrounding the impact that the security checkpoint on the Magilligan side.
"Firstly the cost of running this security checkpoint is £90,000 alone for staff never mind the upkeep of it. This is money that could be invested in the ferry service to enhance its sustainability.
"Secondly, the very fact that people have to travel through this checkpoint on the Magilligan side puts many people off using the service therefore affecting revenue.
"The most ludicrous point is that if you wish to go by road there is no security checkpoints whatsoever so why is money being poured down the drain having a negative impact into what locals see as a fantastic resource.
"We need to see an immediate review of this checkpoint and strategically investigate how we can help sustain this valuable ferry crossing. I have raised the issue with both the DRD in the north and the Irish Government as a matter of urgency."