Border bus yard aims to bypass customs with entrance in north

Posted By: December 04, 2017

Seamus McKinney. Irish News. Belfast. Monday, December 4, 2017

A cross-border businessman has come up with a unique answer to Brexit problems by building a new entrance to his Donegal-based company that opens directly into the north.

Don Reddin is also splitting his Republic of Ireland bus hire business into two parts, with northern and southern companies.

Based at Muff on the Donegal-Derry border, Reddins Coach Hire company is the largest private bus firm in the north-west. A long-established company, Reddins is also one of the biggest school transport firms north of the border.

However, Mr. Reddin feared Brexit could lead to the introduction of customs posts which would make it impossible for him to continue his cross-border work.

“It’s not political or anything like that. It’s just practical. I remember when the border was there before and there were three checkpoints, the army, and northern and southern border checkpoints. Well hopefully the army won’t be there but there could be two checkpoints on the border so I couldn’t wait to see what was going to happen I have to prepare now,” he said.

Five years ago, the Donegal businessman purchased land adjacent to his site at Muff which extended into Northern Ireland.

“I bought two acres for a project which I thought would be way in the future but it has turned out to be lucky,” he said.

The businessman has now developed a new yard beside and linked to his Republic of Ireland yard which opens into Northern Ireland.

“It’s given me two addresses, Kilderry in Muff (Co Donegal) and 83 Coney Road (in Co Derry). I’m also splitting the entire company in two, into Reddin Coach Hire and Reddin Coach Hire NI Ltd.

“Where else am I going to do business but in Derry? It’s like this if you lived in Glengormley, where are you going to go to work – in Belfast or Coleraine?

“Well with me where will I get the business but Derry?” he said.

Mr. Reddin said most of his drivers were from Derry and he was faced with seeking out a new address north of the border after Brexit. However, the project has proved expensive.

“The total cost of developing the yard is around £200,000. That’s the cost of Brexit to me,” he said.