London train strikes July: Aslef overtime ban to cause further disruption
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Railway companies have warned of disruption to customers next week as train drivers take part in an overtime ban.
Aslef union members at 16 train companies will refuse to work overtime from Monday July 3 to Saturday July 8 as part of an ongoing dispute over pay.
The union had also planned to take part in a full walkout on Sunday July 2 over changes to sick pay but this action has since been suspended.
What train companies are affected?
The train operators affected include all the leading long-distance firms:
- Avanti West Coast
- East Midlands Railway
- Great Western Railway
- TransPennine Express
In addition, the industrial action is designed to affect most commuter links to and from
- Greater Anglia
- GTR (Gatwick Express, Great Northern, Southern and Thameslink)
- South Western Railway (including the Island Line)
Outside the capital, Northern Trains and West Midlands Trains will be affected.
Advice for customers
A number of train lines have asked customers to check before they travel next week and some have created revised timetables.
South Western Railway has said all Train Operating Companies rely on a certain amount of overtime and rest day working to operate their usual timetables.
The rail company has revised its timetable for the week in which services will be reduced to hourly in off-peak periods with a small number of cancellations during the morning and evening peaks. You can check the full details on their website.
Southern, Thameslink and Great Northern railways are also introducing an amended timetable and says services are expected to be busier.
The Gatwick Express will not run during the overtime ban, instead Gatwick Airport will be served by Southern and Thameslink. Customers can check full details on the website.
What is Aslef saying?
General secretary Mick Whelan said: "Once again we find ourselves with no alternative but to take this action. We have continually come to the negotiating table in good faith, seeking to resolve the dispute. Sadly, it is clear from the actions of both the train operating companies and the government that they do not want an end to the dispute. Their goals appear to be to continue industrial strife and to shut down our industry.
"We don’t want to inconvenience the public. We just want to see our members paid fairly during a cost of living crisis when inflation is running at above 10%, and to not see our terms and conditions taken away.
"It’s time for the government and the companies to think again and look for a resolution."
What is the government saying?
A Department for Transport spokesperson said: “The government has played its part to try and end this dispute by facilitating a fair and reasonable pay offer that would see train drivers’ already high salaries increase from an average of £60,000 to £65,000.
“Union leaders have repeatedly denied members a chance to vote on this generous offer that would give them a chance to end these damaging strikes. We once again urge them to do the right thing and put it to their members.”
What is the Rail Delivery Group saying?
A spokesperson for the Rail Delivery Group said: “Aslef’s leadership continues to disrupt customers’ travel plans. They rejected a fair and affordable offer without putting it to their members.
“Train companies will work hard to minimise the impact of the overtime ban, but the impact of Aslef’s action will vary across the 16 train operators so customers are advised to check their travel plans before setting off.
“We ask Aslef to recognise the very real financial challenge the industry is facing and work with us to deliver a better railway with a strong long-term future.”