Passengers urged to be prepared for national rail strike as talks continue

Published on : Thursday, May 21, 2015

e86f9bf589a7460cab19c3d6d57acaebTalks between Network Rail and the trade unions aimed at resolving the ongoing rail dispute resumed for a third day today at conciliation service ACAS.



Network Rail will be making its negotiating team available all week and into the weekend if necessary in order to find a deal to prevent strike action.



If the strike does go ahead, train services across the country will be severely affected and Network Rail and the train operators are currently working together on contingency plans. These will be fine-tuned over the next few days with an outline of what level of service will be possible on the affected days available from Thursday afternoon.



Mark Carne, Network Rail chief executive, said: “We are continuing to talk with the unions and we believe there is a settlement to be had. I sincerely hope we can reach one and my team will be available all week, and into the weekend if necessary, to find a deal to prevent strike action.



“From the very start of negotiations we made clear that we want to reward our staff for the incredible job they do – but that any pay rise needs to be linked to smarter, more effective ways of working.



“We can’t bank on the unions calling off the strike, so we are now concluding our contingency plans so passengers can make decisions about their journeys.



“If the strike goes ahead, it’s important that people check before travelling and are aware of the special measures put in place by train operators for people who have already booked tickets.”



Letter to passengers



An open letter to passengers from Mark Carne has been published today in national newspapers, highlighting where they can find more information about disruption if the strike goes ahead. A radio advert recorded by Mr Carne is also scheduled to run on commercial radio stations, with posters and messages on information screens in place at stations across the country.



Full details of amended timetables and what trains will run, when and where, are expected to be available from train operators and National Rail Enquiries by Saturday 23 May, with overviews and summaries available from the afternoon of Thursday 21 May.



Source:- Network Rail

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