Further strike action to take place across Southeastern network

Southeastern trains Photo John Horton

There will be no trains running on the Southeastern network this Saturday (August 13) as strike action by transport unions continues.

Action has been announced by the RMT (National Union of Rail, Maritime and Transport Workers); ASLEF (Associated Society of Locomotive Engineers and Firemen) and TSSA  independent trade union for the transport and travel trade industries whose members include control centre staff, engineers, ticket office, gate staff and operational and support roles across railways, buses and ferries.

Strike action is due to take place on the Southeastern network on:

Saturday 13 August (between 00:01 and 23:59) – ASLEF union

Thursday 18 August (between 00:01 and 23:59) – RMT & TSSA unions

Saturday 20 August (between 00:01 and 23:59) – RMT & TSSA unions

Saturday 13 August

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.

Thameslink and Southern will be running a limited service to some Southeastern stations, visit their websites for more information.

Thursday 18 August

There will be a limited service running on the rail network and some routes will be closed. Please only travel by train if absolutely 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.

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.

Friday 19 August

If you travel on the day after strike action, Friday 19 August, expect severe disruption in the morning.

Services won’t run until Network Rail staff begin their shifts on Friday.

First trains will be busy, and queueing systems will be in place to manage space on trains, so please plan ahead, check your entire journey and allow extra time.

No services will run before 7am.

There will also be strike action affecting the London Underground and Overground network on Friday 19 August. Visit TfL for more information.

Saturday 20 August

There will be a limited service running on the rail network and some routes will be closed. Please only travel by train if absolutely necessary. If you are travelling expect severe disruption, plan ahead and check your entire journey.

Only 45 out of 180 stations will be open. No rail replacement buses will serve stations which are closed.

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.

The action is being taken in a dispute over pay, jobs, work conditions and safety concerns.

The RMT say Network Rail and train operating companies have subjected their staff to multiyear pay freezes and plan to cut thousands of jobs.

Mick Whelan, general secretary of ASLEF, said: “Strikes are always the last resort. We don’t want to inconvenience passengers – our friends and families use public transport, too – and we don’t want to lose money by going on strike but we’ve been forced into this position by the companies, who say they have been driven to this by the Tory government.

“Many of our members – who were the men and women who moved key workers and goods around the country during the pandemic – have not had a pay rise since 2019.

“With inflation running at north of 10% that means those drivers have had a real terms pay cut over the last three years. We want an increase in line with the cost of living – we want to be able to buy, in 2022, what we could buy in 2021.

“It’s not unreasonable to ask your employer to make sure you’re not worse off for three years in a row. Especially as the train companies are doing very nicely, thank you, out of Britain’s railways – with handsome profits, dividends for shareholders, and big salaries for managers – and train drivers don’t want to work longer for less.”

Find timetable details and refund advice from Southeastern here


  1. And ofcourse this Saturday is Margate Pride and the Folk week visitors normally leave Broadstairs that day too !

  2. We all know what these people want, fair do to them ,but all they are causing is trouble for people who use the trains ,again my son ,who lose another days pay, because of their action, maybe he should she their union for lost wages ,surely the best way for all strikes is to go to an independent panel ,and that ruling is law for both sides ,some you would win some you lose ,it has to better than any one striking ,because at the end of the day ,all these stickers in any industry get is lost wages ,maybe a pay rise ,but normally never enough to cover the loses ,and the union bosses do not care ,as they are nearly all on big wages and still get paid ,I remember my 12 years of working in the bakery industry,the union bosses never lost their pay ,when we were out on strike

  3. Withdrawing labour is always a last resort – it’s going to cost the employee money.
    But workers have few levers when it comes to negotiating with management.
    When the TOCs put up the fares by inflation busting amounts year on year, there’s hardly a murmur.
    The railway employees are fighting for a payrise that means their will not be as bad as it was. But no way is it an inflation busting rise.
    And some employees are fighting for their jobs. In the interests of “modernisation” and “efficiancy”, the TOCs want to sack thousands of workers. I can understand that as working practices change, so do the requirements for particular trades. The railways no longer employ farriers, ostlers nor firemen.
    But there are ways of slimming down a workforce other than taking a hatchet to them, and condemning breadwinners to the scrap heap.

  4. I agree strike action is the last resort,what I was saying ,is a independent panel free from ,government and union influence hears both sides ,and gives their answer ,legally binding on both sides,therefore ,no need for strikes because either side could then sue the other ,ACAS is beyond last resort

    • Nit another strike. For someone whose disabilities meant having to give up the car, this really takes the pee. Also, having just hiked their prices up. Its always the consumer who suffers during a time when things are crap

  5. An independent panel would need guidelines, just like a judge needs the framework of the law.
    Who would set these guidelines? The government?

  6. Very foolish and myopic.
    More incentives for engineers to create driverless trains, cleanersless vacuuming devices, etc. and reap the patent rewards.
    Why don’t people ever learn?

    • There is an established analysis that notes that UK industry generally is less technologically advanced than the rest of Europe because wages have been suppressed so low there is no incentive for employers to take the plunge and invest in new machinery or working methods. Why bother when workers are so cheap?
      So there MIGHT be a push towards driverless trains , for example, if the drivers gain more pay. After all, it was militancy in the dock industry that led to a brief period of decent pay, after generations of poverty , and ,then, within years, whole new work methods like RO-RO/containerisation was brought in to get rid of thousands of dockers. Miles and miles of docks in London,Liverpool etc were closed.
      But should the dockers have carried on with poverty wages for ever?
      At least they got a few years of decent pay, like the coal miners did, until the establishment struck back and closed the pits.
      Do we just put up with bad treatment out of fear that we will be punished if we resist?
      That would be the attitude of slaves. Eventually, the most servile slaves will rise up. That is what we are seeing now.

      • I’ve worked lots of very low paid jobs, including cleaning toilets in a sports centre, washing up in a hotel, labouring on building sites and sweeping up in a market. I did ALL these jobs to the very best of my ability – NOT because I was paid well (these were all in the pre-minimum wage days), but because I’ve always taken pride in my work. In other countries, people see (say) waitressing as a career, not just something to be put up with because nothing else is around.

        Today, I got a train home from Broadstairs to Birchington, and (wonders of wonders!), the very nice guard came and checked our tickets, making those without purchase one. Now HE deserves a pay rise, but not the majority of them, who can’t be bothered to try to recover potential lost revenue for their employers because they’re “not paid enough”.

        • I frequently travel on the trains between Thanet and London.
          I frequently see the train manager passing through the coaches, checking tickets.
          I frequently see said employee demanding to see railcard, and dishing out penalty fares to those travelling on HS1 between Ashford and London who shouldn’t.
          Birchington is only a couple of stops from Broadstairs, so it’s not really surprising that you didn’t see the ticket guy in the one coach (out of 12) that you went in.

          • I’ve travelled to London and back a couple of times in recent weeks, as well as often travelling to Rochester, Faversham, Deal and Dover (amongst others) – yet this is the first time my ticket has been checked in at least two months. That’s why it was an extra surprise, being on such a brief journey (oh, and it was a 6 coach train).

        • I understand your sentiments but the guard’s primary function is train safety – ticket checking comes down the list. Amongst other duties your guard will ensure the doors are opened and closed securely without trapping anyone in the doors. They’ll check the platform is clear before allowing the train to leave. Their presence will deter petty criminality on board. Oh – and yes, they’ll check your ticket too!

      • The only people who benefit are the senior union officials, who unlike Serwotka, think it’s ok to get paid lots for facility time.
        It also makes remote working more appealing to more employers and employees and hastens the further demise of post-Covid metropolitan centres.

    • Would YOU feel safe on a driverless train at 90-100mph? Who will look after you if the train breaks down in a tunnel? Who’s there for you on the last train back in the evening when you’re being intimidated by a group of pissed up youths?

      • There’s no one there to help you anyway. Load of selfish gits making life a misery for the rest of us for their own selfish gain

  7. Isn’t it amazing how the one nation in Europe which held off Napoleon & Hitler has been reduced to a herd of quivering ovines?
    I’m pretty sure that even in my sixties I can figure out solutions to problems myself.
    And as for “pissed up youths”? If the station staff are doing the job properly, they wouldn’t have been allowed on the train to start with!

  8. If no trains to margate or Broadstairs no one be here.. Yay
    Peace at last
    Traffic pollution
    Rubbish pollutuon
    People pollution.

  9. Back now to the 60s/70s and 80s where bully boy Union leaders pushed their members like lemmings over the cliff
    Pay rises need to be on the back of productivity agreements and this is what the Unions do not accept. Otherwise it just becomes a cost increase for fellow workers.

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