Dublin–Westport/Galway railway line

The Dublin-Westport/Galway line is a major railway route from Dublin to Galway or Westport, County Mayo. The line is part of the greater intercity rail network formed by branches of the main line between Dublin and Cork. The route to Westport and Galway branches away from the main line at Portarlington in County Laois and continues as far as Athlone in County Westmeath, where it splits again, with one branch to Westport and the other to Galway.[1]

Dublin–Westport Main Line
Dublin–Galway Main Line
Rosshill level crossing - geograph.org.uk - 1252889.jpg
An ICR 22136 on the Rosshill level crossing on the Galway to Dublin service.
Overview
StatusOperational
OwnerIarnród Éireann
LocaleIreland
Termini
Stations13 (to Galway)
12 (13 in exchange; to Westport)
Service
TypeCommuter rail, Inter-city rail
Heavy rail
SystemIarnród Éireann
ServicesInterCity:
Dublin–Galway
Dublin–Westport
Limerick–Galway
Commuter:
Galway Suburban Rail
Operator(s)Iarnród Éireann
Rolling stock22000 Class
History
Opened1847
Technical
Line length39 miles (63 km) (Portarlington–Athlone)
48.75 miles (78.46 km) (Athlone–Galway)
82.875 miles (133.374 km) (Athlone–Westport)
Number of tracksSingle track
CharacterPrimary
Track gauge1,600 mm (5 ft 3 in) Irish gauge
Operating speed100 miles per hour (160 km/h) (Portarlington–Athlone)
90 miles per hour (140 km/h) (Athlone–Galway)
70 miles per hour (110 km/h) (Athlone–Westport)
Route map

Year
closed
Dublin Heuston Luas
Luas Red Line
to Tallaght & Saggart
Inchicore Works
Park West and
Cherry Orchard
Dublin Suburban Rail#Western Commuter
Clondalkin/Fonthill Dublin Suburban Rail#Western Commuter
Kishoge
Adamstown Dublin Suburban Rail#Western Commuter
Hazelhatch and Celbridge Dublin Suburban Rail#Western Commuter
Straffan
1947
Sallins and Naas Dublin Suburban Rail#Western Commuter
Newbridge
Kildare
Monasterevin
Portarlington
Tullamore
Horseleap Branch
to Mullingar
1964
Clara
Athlone
Ballinasloe
Woodlawn
Attymon
Athenry
Oranmore
Galway
Roscommon
Castlerea
Ballyhaunis
Claremorris
Manulla Junction
Exchange
only
Foxford
Ballina
Castlebar
Westport
to Achill
1937
Westport Quay
1978
A non-geographic diagram showing the Dublin - Westport/Galway line

Westport lineEdit

The Westport line was opened by the MGWR in 1866[2] to serve what was then a major port. At this point, services ran from Broadstone station in Dublin via Mullingar. However, the GSWR route reached Athlone in 1859, which gave a second route from Kingsbridge station. Following the rationalisation of the railway network by Córas Iompair Éireann, the GSWR route was made the main route from Dublin to the west coast after 1973.

Galway lineEdit

The Galway line was opened by the MGWR in 1851, which became the primary route to the west coast city from Dublin. The GSWR route to Athlone opened in 1859, but the company also ran another route in the west of the country, when it purchased the Waterford, Limerick and Western Railway, which operated the Waterford-Collooney route that called at Athenry. In 1973, CIÉ made the former GSWR route the main one to Galway, with services on the old MGWR line slowly withdrawn, until they were ended in 1987.

TodayEdit

As of March 2018 all services to both Westport and Galway are operated under the Intercity brand using the former GSWR route from Dublin Heuston. Services are operated by Iarnród Éireann's 22000 Class DMU. There are nine trains daily in each direction to and from Dublin and Galway on Monday to Thursday with 8 from Heuston to Galway and nine from Galway to Dublin. On Saturday there are 9 trains from Heuston to Galway and 8 from Galway to Heuston. On Sunday there are 6 trains in each direction from Heuston to Galway. There are 4 trains from Heuston to Westport Monday to Thursday and 5 from Westport to Heuston. On Friday there are 5 trains in each direction. On Saturday and Sunday there are 3 trains from Heuston to Westport and 4 from Westport to Heuston. These trains usually operate in 3 to 7 car ICR trains.

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ Reidy, Michael (30 October 2021). Network Statement (PDF) (2022 ed.). Irish Rail. pp. 73–74, 79–81. Retrieved 21 September 2022.
  2. ^ Westport railway station Archived March 17, 2009, at the Wayback Machine - eiretrains