The Catholic hierarchy has said the incoming Government should ease pressure on families by providing speedier public transport.

Archbishop Dermot Clifford of Cashel said commuting parents were tired at the end of their working days and a good train service in greater Dublin would allow them more time with their families.

At their quarterly general meeting in Maynooth, the 33 Irish bishops expressed concern about the continuing gap between rich and poor, including those who find it increasingly difficult to afford a home.