NI transport chief quits post to answer religious calling

Translink head gives up £155,000 job to devote his life to ‘preaching the gospel’

The chief executive of Northern Ireland public transport company Translink is to quit his £155,000 (€208,000) per annum post to become a religious preacher.

David Strahan, who was only appointed to the position in October, said he is resigning so he can devote his life to "preaching the gospel".

He is the second high-profile Northern Ireland person in recent months to leave a senior post to pursue a religious vocation.

In October, BBC Northern Ireland's political correspondent Martina Purdy stood down from her post to enter a convent in west Belfast.


Mr Strahan said he will continue in his job until September to allow a successor to be appointed to Translink, the company which runs Northern Ireland’s rail and main bus services.

“I know many people may not understand this decision but, as this is a very personal matter, I ask that the media respect my privacy.

“I will not be making any further public comment on this issue,” he said.

“I am grateful for the opportunities I have had to make a difference in these organisations and appreciate the support I received from all my colleagues,” he added.

“I will continue to lead Translink until the autumn of this year, which allows time for my successor to be appointed. In the meantime I will continue to drive forward the efficiency and transformation programme I have already commenced and ensure that Translink delivers cost-effective public transport services,” he said.

Translink John chairman Trethowan said the company respected Mr Strahan’s decision and wished him well.

He praised his “energy and commitment” and thanked him for all “his hard work and leadership of the organisation through a period of significant funding challenges”.

Gerry Moriarty

Gerry Moriarty

Gerry Moriarty is the former Northern editor of The Irish Times