Getting to the papal Mass in Dublin

 

Sir, – I recently contacted Bus Éireann to inquire about services to Dublin on the final day of the Pope’s visit to Ireland and the Mass in the Phoenix Park.

Having earlier checked its website, there was no indication of any changes to the Sunday schedule (fewer services) and while of course, there are some buses running on the day and it is possible to purchase a seat on a service for that day, the site clearly makes the point that there is no guarantee of being accommodated on the service!

You can imagine my surprise to receive a response from the customer service section of Bus Éireann to tell me, “we do not have any special services or extra buses being added to routes for this event”.

The email did, helpfully, suggest I might speak to my parish!

Surely the objective of the Garda Síochána and the many others involved in planning this (including the Dublin archdiocese) would be to direct the maximum number of people towards public transport.

However, if you live outside the capital, and don’t wish to drive to Dublin, you can queue up and when the (one) bus that is scheduled in the timetable turns up, you can hope you get on. If it is full, you just return home.

Is this really the way to treat people in rural Ireland? Did the planners in Bus Éireann really sit around the table and decide that an unchanged Sunday service was an adequate response? – Yours, etc,

T GERARD BENNETT,

Bunbrosna,

Co Westmeath.

Sir, – Given the fact that Kildare dug its heels in on Croke Park is there any chance that Pope Francis might opt for Newbridge instead? – Yours, etc,

HELEN NOONAN,

Ranelagh,

Dublin 6.