Only 44 of 180 railway stations served by Southeastern will be open tomorrow (July 27) and there will be no services at all on Saturday, July 30 due to industrial action.
The RMT (National Union of Rail, Maritime and Transport Workers) trade union specialising in the transport sector, whose members include workers within the rail industry, is taking strike action on July 27, August 18 and August 20.
ASLEF (Associated Society of Locomotive Engineers and Firemen) the UK’s Train Drivers’ Union is taking strike action on July 30.
Wednesday 27 July
There will be a limited service running on the rail network and some routes will be closed. Only travel by train if necessary. If you are travelling expect severe disruption, plan ahead and check your entire journey.
Only 44 out of 180 stations will be open. No rail replacement buses will serve stations which are closed, except where pre-planned engineering work is taking place.
You may be unable to board trains at stations where a limited service is running, especially at locations such as Ashford and Ebbsfleet.
The last trains back from London will be much earlier than usual.
Thursday 28 July
If you travel by train on the day after industrial action, services will start later, plan ahead, check your entire journey and allow extra time.
No services will run before 7am
Services are expected to be extremely busy, especially in the mornings
Saturday 30 July
There will be no Southeastern services running on the rail network. Please do not attempt to travel by train on this day. For alternative transport options visit traveline
The strikes are as a result of anger over job security, pay and working conditions.
RMT general secretary Mick Lynch said:“Strike action will take place Wednesday as planned and our members are more determined than ever to secure a decent pay rise, job security and good working conditions.
“Network Rail have not made any improvement on their previous pay offer and the Train Companies have not offered us anything new.
“In fact Network Rail have upped the ante threatening to impose compulsory redundancies and unsafe 50% cuts to maintenance work, if we did not withdraw our planned strike action.
“The train operating companies have put driver only operations on the table along with ransacking our members terms and conditions.
“RMT will continue to negotiate in good faith but we will not be bullied or cajoled by anyone.
“The government need to stop their interference in this dispute so the rail employers can come to a negotiated settlement with us.”
Mick Whelan, ASLEF general secretary, said: ‘We don’t want to go on strike – strikes are the result of a failure of negotiation – and this union, since I was elected GS in 2011, has only ever been on strike, until this year, for a handful of days.
‘We don’t want to inconvenience passengers – not least because our friends and families use public transport, too, and we believe in building trust in the railways in Britain – and we don’t want to lose money by going on strike.
‘But we’ve been forced into this position by the train companies, driven by the Tory government. The drivers at the companies where we are striking have had a real terms pay cut over the last three years – since April 2019.
‘And these companies are offering us nothing, saying their hands have been tied by the government. That means, in real terms, with inflation running ahead at 9%, 10%, and even 11% this year, according to which index you use, that they are being told to take a real terms pay cut. And that is not acceptable.
‘Strike action is, now, the only option available but we are always open to talks if the train companies, or the government, want to talk to us and make a fair and sensible offer.”