Bus and rail passengers urged to plan ahead of strikes in Merseyside

Reporter:

Matt Warner

PASSENGERS are being urged to plan their journeys ahead of strike action in Merseyside.

Strike action on Arriva buses comes after crisis talks over pay between the union Unite and Arriva North West broke down on Thursday, October 12.

Drivers and engineers have also announced further strike action every Monday throughout November and Wednesday, November 8.

Regional managing director for Arriva North West Phil Stone said: “We would like to reassure customers that we will continue to do all we can to resolve the situation and wholeheartedly apologise for the inconvenience that this will cause.

"We want to also remind them to continue to check their routes before they travel.”

Bus services by other operators including Stagecoach are due to run as normal with increased capacity on key routes.

Walk-outs by Arriva staff will coincide with rail strikes by the Rail, Maritime and Transport Union (RMT) which will affect Merseyrail and Northern services on November 8.

The dispute between the RMT and Merseyrail relates to a new fleet of driver-only trains that will replace the current 40-year-old rolling stock in 2020 which the RMT say will threaten the security of guards jobs on trains.

Merseyrail services are planned to run every 30 minutes with the exception of the New Brighton to Liverpool services which will be every hour from around 7am to 7pm with a break in service between around 11.30am and 2.30pm.

Northern will also operate a reduced service with the majority of trains operating between 7am and 7pm.

Other train operating companies including TransPennine Express, East Midlands Trains and London Midland will continue to operate as normal.

Managing director at Merseyrail Jan Chaudhry-van der Velde said: “While yet another strike is one too many for customers, we are pleased that over the forthcoming day of industrial action, we will be able to run more trains than on previous strike days.

"For the first time, we will be in a position to service the Kirkby line, and will also be running trains to and from Liverpool South Parkway.

The action only affects Arriva services in the North West – Arriva Bus Wales Services in North Wales and parts of Cheshire will operate as usual.

Email:

matt.warner@nwn.co.uk

See full story in the Chester Leader

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