Bus ireann was able to replace all schools services operated by Lough Swilly Bus Company in County Donegal, from the start of the new term on April 28. .
Lough Swilly was formally wound up on 18 April with the loss of 80 jobs, approximately 20 of which were in Northern Ireland with the remainder in Donegal. The winding up followed the company’s appointment of a liquidator the previous week.
More than 2,000 schoolchildren hold tickets issued by Bus ireann for use on over 50 school bus routes and a number of public scheduled bus services formerly provided by Lough Swilly.
In March, HM Revenue and Customs had petitioned the High Court for the winding up of the company, formally known as the Londonderry and Lough Swilly Railway Company, due to substantial debts.
Established in 1852, the company had been the oldest surviving statutory railway company from the Victorian era. Abandonment of the rail service started early in the 20th century with the company moving exclusively to road vehicle operation in 1953.
Unite Regional Officer Philip Oake says: â€œThe announcement that the company is to be wound up comes as a shock to workers who were told that it would continue to operate for another month.â€