‘Demand’ needed for hospital stop

SIGNIFICANT passenger demand would be needed for Translink to create a stop at Antrim Area Hospital, the transport company has said.

It followed a call last week from Magherafelt Sinn Fein Councillor Kate McEldowney who said she had raised the issue with Translink.

She said she had received concerns regarding the lack of accessibility on public services to Antrim Area Hospital and had requested that Translink implement an additional stop at the hospital on the main Belfast to Derry route - using the 212 Maiden City Flyer.

“I have lobbied Translink to consider this additional service along the main Belfast to Derry route which will help ease the burden of many who have appointments at Antrim Area Hospital and also those who wish to visit,” she said in a statement last week.

Cllr McEldowney said she wanted to see Translink and the Northern Health and Social Care Trust work together to implement this additional service into the timetable which, she claimed, would certainly meet the needs of visitors and patients, especially those from rural areas.

However, Translink said to date it had not been approached about the possibility of the 212 Maiden City Flyer servicing the Antrim Area Hospital.

“The 212 is Translink’s most popular Express Service and the introduction of additional stops would be detrimental to the existing timetable,” said a spokesperson.

It stated that any moves to introduce a stop servicing Antrim Area Hospital would be based on significant passenger demand as well as support from the relevant stakeholders.