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Regional Development Minister: Significant progress made in securing the future of Magilligan to Greencastle ferry link

12 May, 2009

Regional Development Minister Conor Murphy MP MLA, today welcomed progress made in securing the future operation of the Magilligan to Greencastle Ferry link.

Speaking after a round table discussion which he held today at Magilligan with interested District Councils, the Minister said: “Today’s meeting has been useful and good progress has been made. Significantly, I advised Limavady Borough Council that I have secured agreement from the British Transport Minister, Jim Fitzpatrick MP, that the Magilligan to Greencastle Ferry Service should no longer be designated as an international service. This is a vital development as it means that the ferry service will now be recognised as an inland service and therefore the elaborate and very costly security measures that were applied by the British transport authorities can now be substantially reduced.

“I welcome this decision which should considerably reduce the financial burden that such security measures have placed on the ferry service. I know that many of those using this service in the local community shared my view that the security measures in place were unnecessary. This is a common sense decision, and a significant step in securing the future of this important link.”

Reflecting on the outcome of his meeting the Minister said: “I recognise that there are many other challenges to securing the future of this ferry service. Whilst I have been able to make a significant contribution, there is no doubt that there is a clear onus on all parties with an interest in the service to play their part in finding solutions to ensure the long-term viability of this important link. In particular, I would strongly urge Limavady Borough Council and Donegal County Council, as joint sponsors of this service, to build on the progress made to date, and to act quickly.”

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