No trains serving Thanet and wider Kent area during three days of strikes

Southeastern trains Photo John Horton

There will be no trains on Southeastern routes except for a limited service on the Dartford and Orpington routes and Highspeed route between London St Pancras and Ashford on June 21,23 and 25th due to strike action.

Rail union RMT  says more than 50,000 railway workers across the country will walkout as part of national strike action in the biggest dispute on the network since 1989.

The union will shut down the country’s railway network on 21st, 23rd and 25th June, saying it is due to the inability of rail employers to come to a negotiated settlement with RMT.

The RMT say Network Rail and train operating companies have subjected their staff to multiyear pay freezes and plan to cut thousands of jobs. Despite intense talks with the rail bosses, RMT says it has not been able to secure a pay proposal nor a guarantee of no compulsory redundancies.

RMT Industrial Action on Southeastern means the vast majority of trains will not run, and most stations will be closed

Services will be severely restricted with most routes closed completely and only 20% of trains running

Significant morning disruption is expected on the days immediately after industrial action; Wednesday 22, Friday 24 and Sunday 26 June.

Scott Brightwell, Southeastern’s Operations and Safety Director, said: “We want to avoid industrial action, because we know it’ll be really difficult for our customers. If these strikes go ahead there’ll be significant disruption to our services between Tuesday and Sunday.

“The number of train services we’ll be able to run will be extremely limited. Many of our routes will have no trains and most stations will be closed. So, we’re advising passengers please do not travel on strike days as we cannot guarantee you will be able to travel.

“We want to make sure you’re fully refunded for not being able to travel. Information on how to claim refunds is available on our website.

“I’d like to apologise to customers for the inconvenience and frustration this industrial action will cause. We urge the RMT to call off the industrial action, and work with us to find a resolution as we look to rebuild the railway together.”

Fewer than 40 stations on Southeastern’s network will be open, with only the London-Orpington and Dartford lines remaining open within London, running a very limited service.

There will be no trains serving most of Kent, including the Medway Towns, Tonbridge, Maidstone, Thanet, Canterbury, Folkestone and Dover, with Highspeed trains only running between London St Pancras and Ashford.

Southeastern is unable to provide rail replacement buses or taxis and is reiterating the advice not to travel on strike days because it is likely that customers will be unable to board trains, or are unable to make their return journey, before the railway closes down in the early evening.

The RMT balloted members at 15 train companies (including Southeastern) plus Network Rail for industrial action. Members at 13 train companies plus Network Rail have voted in favour of national strike action.

A action will include picket lines at stations including Ramsgate on strike days starting at 7:30am each day.

RMT general secretary Mick Lynch said: “Railway workers have been treated appallingly and despite our best efforts in negotiations, the rail industry with the support of the government has failed to take their concerns seriously.

“We have a cost-of-living crisis, and it is unacceptable for railway workers to either lose their jobs or face another year of a pay freeze when inflation is at 11.1pc and rising.

“Our union will now embark on a sustained campaign of industrial action which will shut down the railway system.

“Rail companies are making at least £500m a year in profits, whilst fat cat rail bosses have been paid millions during the Covid-19 pandemic.

“This unfairness is fuelling our members anger and their determination to win a fair settlement.

“RMT is open to meaningful negotiations with rail bosses and ministers, but they will need to come up with new proposals to prevent months of disruption on our railways.”


  1. Utterly and completely selfish. They are not the only ones who have not had a payrise in recent years. They should compare what they earn to others offering vital services such as care workers and nurses.

    • Thats a load of Boll**ks, Jane! This Tory government, under Johnson, has effectively cut public workers pay, because they haven’t had any pay rises to cover inflation! In the case of rail workers they haven’t had any pay awards for the last 3 years! There are Waste Disposal (Bin men) striking up and down the country for the same reason, so blame Johnson for cutting peoples pay. This, after he was next to deaths door with Covid, but was nursed back to health by nurses, so what he did do to thank them, he cut their pay, Duuurh!

      • Yawnzzz! Dumpton the broken record! You are posts are so predictable. Some people may say as predictable as a dog cocking it’s leg up against a lamp post! Plus some people may say your comments are as valuable as the contents of the dogs bladder! Jane is entitled to her views whether you agree or not without telling her in crude terms what you think of them. Now chap just go away fester for the rest of the evening until you decide or not to fire off another missive accusing me of talking twaddle or something worse!

      • No Dumpton that can’t be right… the daily mail tells people that these people are lazy and selfish.

        They wouldn’t lie right??

        Repeating and regurgitation of daily mail “news” without fact checking is all the rage. It’s easier than deal with facts.

    • Then the others who have not had a payrise in tears should urge their inions to take action.
      And if you don’t belong to a union, join one.

    • It’s not selfish to expect wages to rise with inflation, rents and living costs. It’s necessary to ask for it and fight for it. Remember that profits are at record levels. Don’t you think that those hoarding profits are the selfish ones? There’s money to pay better wages for all at the low and middle end, the only reason pay is being suppressed is due to greed and right-wing ideology. Those striking know that other professions can strike for better pay too. And they will be, by the looks of it. All workers should stand in solidarity with one another whilst taking action for better pay. I say this as a person of working age who uses rail and buses frequently. I wonder how many complaining about strikes are actually retired, and lived through an era where wages were very good compared with living costs, and where a family could even have one breadwinner. Those days are long gone. Solidarity with rail workers and postal workers, also with nurses and teachers who may well all be going on strike in coming weeks. Remember, the rail bosses are imposing £4 Billion worth of cuts to the rail service. They are cutting jobs, closing ticket offices, reducing the number of platform staff, and expecting workers to accept below inflation pay.

  2. “Action will include picket lines at stations including Ramsgate on strike days starting at 7:30am each day.” Will they be putting on special trains to bring the pickets down and take them home again?

        • The 3 day week was brought about by Ted Heath, a Tory Prime Minister, and look what happened to him! He called a general election about who governs Britain, and it turned out not to be him! Britain has record breaking poverty, upwards of 40%, and parents are having to go without meals so their kids have one. Elderly people shivering in their homes too scared to put heating on! An NHS in bits, with record numbers of nurses, and doctors leaving their professions, and millions waiting years now for elected surgery. Britain will soon become a 3rd World country, and what is our leader doing, swanning around the country trying to get photo shoots! He’s as big a Pillock as Peter Checksfield if thats possible!

      • 40 years ago. Let it go. Move on. What happened 40 years ago is no defence for what’s happening now. I hate apologists for a terrible government by telling us other governments were bad.

        Yeah nice one. Very useful.

        • Nut Depressed, my point is, this would happen regardless of who was in power. We’ve had the double whammy of a global pandemic and war in Europe – prior to that, the UK’s post-Brexit economy was in great shape. Unfortunately, we ALL have to tighten our belts, and that includes fat rail workers.

          • dont think it was Peter–the Brexit effects only just started to happen around Covid time, and since then the rules have changed. In fact now we have one of the worse performing economies in Europe ( vs pre Covid levels, so a flat playing field) and the £ is at its lowest rate vs € and $ since before Covid as the world starts to realise the effects its having — not enough staff in key industries–nursing, health care, food production and farming, van drivers, and now we have the airlines and travel business begging the government to ease the rules as we need ‘000s more Europeans to fill the gaps– not surprisingly the Brits don’t want to start their shift at 3am at Manchester airport (last weeks well publicised job vacancies) for £10.41 an hour when they can do the same money in the Trafford Centre and start at 9am. Thats not even mentioning the chronic shortage of hospitality and catering staff due to Brexit.

  3. Unfortunately some people just haven’t got a clue & believe the propaganda in certain sections of our media. Train drivers do not earn 75k a year, so not work 30hrs & probably most importantly are NOT STRIKING. Some people should not be allowed to leave comments on subjects they obviously no nothing about!

  4. Welcome to the sunny uplands and the new normal under the Tory overlords.

    Waits for mouth breathers to mention Labour and the 70s….. ok old timer. Thanks for a completely irrelevant comment. Taxi for you (back to the 70s hopefully)

  5. Not interested, the sad thing is that it’s those mouth breathers who keep voting the tories into power because they think Boris is “one of them”. i.e. A lying, self-serving racist.

  6. Average Train Driver Salaries Per Year
    2019 2020
    Great Western Railway £51,999 £56,773
    Southeastern Railway £50,472 £53,620
    London Underground £49,762 £55,711
    Arriva Group £51,781 £60,945
    London Midland £48,750 £54,040
    Virgin Trains £61,151 £66,231

    Now put this into context with care workers, most of whom are paid the minimum salary. And those who do home visits are usually not even paid for their time going from one patient to another. And many only receive around 20p a mile. I read an article a short while ago about someone dying because an ambulance did not get to him for several hours. And why – because hospitals have so many patients taking up beds due to lack of care beds / staff available so ambulances are waiting for up to an hour to leave a patient at A&E, so can’t get to other patients. Put this into context with those poor train drivers who haven’t had a pay rise for 3 years. I have no sympathy for them whatsoever and still believe they are selfish.

    • It’s still an extremely weird comment to make. Train drivers are NOT STRIKING. They do not even belong to the union that are striking. It’s quite comical to read peoples anger & frustration when they can’t even get their facts correct.

    • Do you know how much Charity CEO earn? How much gambling company CEOs own…. Do you know how much investors earn from shares?!? If you say that’s off topic. How about the amount Train company senior managers earn?? And the CEOs? Why do you believe this is too much money?

      I’m not sure why you don’t like skilled workers (which train drivers are) getting paid an ok wage?!?!?

  7. Funny how generalisation and discrimination come so naturally to a Tory voter that they don’t even see it.

    Incidentally, the plural of Tory is Tories, not Torys. Wouldn’t expect an “author” to make such a basic error. 🤔

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