Tuesday, July 5, 2022
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Home Train Operating Companies Rail prepares for strikes as no settlement reached with RMT

Rail prepares for strikes as no settlement reached with RMT

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Rail operators are now making timetables available in an effort to provide some services during the RMT strikes.

These strikes will take place Tuesday 21, Thursday 23 and Saturday 25 June.

As reported, some operators have said that their services will be cut to as little as 10 per cent of their usual offering.

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On Saturday, RMT confirmed no settlement had been reached and that action was going ahead. In a statement it said: “It has to be re-stated that the source of these disputes is the decision by the Tory Government to cut £4bn of funding from our transport systems – £2bn from national rail and £2bn from Transport for London.”

It said that this meant that via “employing companies” the result was pensions affected, jobs being cut, terms and conditions being affected and a cut in “real pay” due to pay freezes and “below RPI pay proposals”.

On Sunday, the day after a TUC march in London blamed government for the cost-of-living emergency, RMT general secretary Mick Lynch told Sky News he believed other unions would ballot in other services.

RMT’s ballot gives it a mandate for six months.

Writing in The Sun, transport secretary Grant Shapps said some leaders at RMT “believe that they can demand a substantial pay rise without promising to reform outdated working practices that, by rights, should have been consigned to the Museum of Industrial Relations.”

On issuing the altered timetable, Tricia Williams, chief operating officer at Northern, said: “We’ve done everything we can to offer people across the North of England a skeleton service – but our advice remains not to travel.

“The timetable we have put in place has been agreed with Network Rail, who have had to consider the requirements of other train operators and freight services on the network.”

“We apologise in advance for the disruption and inconvenience that the RMT’s industrial action will cause. We continue to be keen to speak to the RMT to find a resolution and avoid any future strikes.”

Greater Anglia, meanwhile, said its services would be impacted by an ASLEF 24-hour strike as well on 2 July.

However, on Saturday, Hull Trains confirmed that some ASLEF action had been called off which had been due to take place on 26 June. The operator said it would continue “meaningful talks” with the union.”

Jamie Burles, Greater Anglia managing director, said: “Please only travel if it’s absolutely necessary on Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday when strikes are due to take place.

“If you do travel, you should expect severe disruption, so plan ahead and make alternative arrangements to travel if you can.

“Please also check travel times for any journeys planned for the days before and after any strike action.

“We are very sorry for the inconvenience caused to customers by this industrial action.

“Work is continuing to try to resolve the dispute as soon as possible.”

Extra Trams

Transport for Greater Manchester, meanwhile, is putting on extra trams to try and getr people aroun d the city region — although tram services are being impacted between Altrincham and Timperley before 7am and after 7pm as Metrolink relies on Network Rail’s signallers for safe operation through that part of the network.

TfGM’s Head of Operations, Alex Cropper, said: “The message to avoid rail travel next week is very clear from train operators – meaning tens of thousands of displaced journeys in Greater Manchester alone. 

“While we expect some of those to adapt their plans, such as by working from home, we expect there to still be many people, who might ordinarily use local train services, needing to get around.  

“With the numbers of trips on our roads now exceeding pre-pandemic levels, any additional journeys by car are likely to add to congestion and delays, which is why we are working with other operators to put on as many additional services as possible. 

“For shorter journeys please think about walking or cycling or, with thousands of free car parking spaces available at our park and ride sites local bus and Metrolink services offer a great alternative, However you plan to get around, our key bit of advice is to plan your journey in advance and allow extra time when travelling .”  

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