Latest Rail News

01.09.16

RMT suspends GTR station staff strike, but two-day Southern action set to go ahead

A planned strike of station staff across the Govia Thameslink Railway (GTR) network has been suspended after RMT came to an agreement with the company.

RMT announced last week that the strike, in protest at plans to close 83 GTR ticket offices or reduce their hours, would take place on 7 September.

GTR has now agreed to trial the closures at eight locations, and not extend the scheme beyond the pilots without an agreement with RMT. It also guaranteed that no jobs would be lost.

Mick Cash, general secretary of the RMT, said: “It is a testament to the solidarity and determination of our station staff members on Govia Thameslink that we have been able to achieve significant progress in the talks at Acas that have enabled us to suspend next week’s action.”

The station staff strike would have clashed with a separate two-day strike the RMT had called on Southern, one of the GTR-owned companies, in protest at plans to expand driver-operated only (DOO) services. This strike is still due to go ahead despite pleas from GTR for Southern to resume negotiations.

A Southern spokesperson said: “While it is good news that this dispute has been suspended, we are disappointed that the dispute with the RMT over changes to the role of Southern conductors remains.”

The Department for Transport announced today that it will give Southern £20m funding to help solve ongoing problems with the franchise, and conduct an investigation to find out how services can be improved.

(Image c. Andrew Matthews)

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