Train strikes cause travel disruption on Christmas Eve across the UK

Passengers are expected to face “two-hour queues” at Gatwick amid the strikes, says the airport’s chief

Britons have been warned of train disruption ahead of tomorrow’s strike as millions embark on Christmas holiday journeys, with motorists told to avoid the roads until 7pm.

The RAC, which expects 7.9 million leisure trips to take place across the UK on Friday and Christmas Eve combined, has published the alert for the M25 extension.

The 23rd of December is usually the busiest day for rail travelers before the Christmas holidays, with the 27th being the busiest for post-Christmas travel.

Members of the Rail, Maritime and Transport Union are set to stage another round of industrial strike tomorrow in an ongoing row over wages and terms,

Earlier, a separate union warned that strikes by Border Guard employees could last up to six months as they stage the first of several days of work.

Mark Sirotka, general secretary of the Confederation of Public and Commercial Services (PCS), urged ministers to “get around the negotiating table” and make a better payment offer.

“Our mandate to strike continues until May,” he told the BBC earlier this morning. “We will support this measure through May and vote again if we have to.”

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Scooterell warns travelers of disruption over Christmas due to strikes

Scotland’s rail operator has warned the strike starting on Christmas Eve will severely limit rail services as people are advised to only travel if it is “absolutely necessary”.

In the latest round of strikes by the Rail, Maritime and Transport (RMT) union, thousands of members have gone on strike over an ongoing wage dispute.

The strike would begin on Christmas Eve at 6pm, with services ending earlier than usual at 3pm – much earlier than usual.

No trains will run on Christmas Day or Boxing Day, and services are expected to resume later on 27 December.

David Simpson, Director of Delivery for ScottRail, said: “We remind customers that Skrill services will be disrupted over the Christmas period as a result of a dispute between Network Rail and RMT.

“Services will stop earlier than usual on Christmas Eve, there will be no services on Boxing Day and the first trains will start later than normal on Tuesday 27 December.

“We know this is really frustrating for everyone affected and we urge customers to plan ahead and check their entire trip in advance.”

Avanti West Coast also strongly urges customers to travel only if necessary and to check their flight over the festive period.

The last train from Glasgow to London will leave at 10.40am on December 24th.

Barry Milsom, Executive Director of Operations and Safety at Avanti West Coast, said: “Over the festive period there will be changes to our services due to planned improvement work, as well as a strike by Network Rail’s RMT members.

“As a result, our last trains will leave early on Christmas Eve and services will start later on December 27th, so the advice to customers is to only travel if absolutely necessary on those days.

In addition, we will be operating a modified schedule and some journeys will include a rail change or replacement service.

“We urge our customers to plan ahead and check in before they take a West Coast Road trip between December 24 and January 2.”

RMT also announced plans for a four-day strike early in the new year, starting on January 3.

Maryam Zakir-HussainDecember 24, 2022 08:25

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All UK hit dates confirmed for January 2023

Peony heroineDecember 24, 2022 07:30

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effects of these strikes

The effects of these strikes are now well established after a number of similar strikes affected British travelers over the summer and earlier this autumn. Industrial action from around 5,000 network rail signals would mean half of the rail network closed, with much reduced service on the rest.

Peony heroineDecember 24, 2022 06:30

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RMT General Secretary Mick Lynch during the evacuation

“We feel compelled to take this action because of the government’s intransigence,” said Mr. Miche Lynch.

“We’ve faced an extremely damaging offer and our members are simply not in a position to accept the changes companies have put on the table.”

Peony heroineDecember 24, 2022 05:30

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Which of the train company employees voted to strike?

ASLEF, which represents 96 per cent of train drivers in England, Scotland and Wales, announced that workers at 15 companies, including Avanti West Coast, Chiltern Railways, CrossCountry, East Midlands Railway and Great Western Railway, had voted to strike.

Peony heroineDecember 24, 2022 04:30

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When is the next train strike planned?

The RMT union revealed that more than 40,000 workers across Network Rail and 14 train operating companies will stage a series of strikes for 48 hours.

An industrial strike is scheduled to take place over the main Christmas period, with members leaving from 6pm on December 24th until 7am on December 27th. Most trains don’t run on December 25th and 26th anyway, but those aiming to travel by train to see their loved ones on either side of Christmas Day will be affected.

Further strikes will then take place on January 3, 4, 6 and 7, 2023.

Peony heroineDecember 24, 2022 03:30

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Advice if it breaks down

National Highways has issued advice to anyone who gets in trouble on a highway – go left.

If your vehicle has a problem, or you get stuck on a highway, stay calm and try to exit at the next intersection or highway service area. If this is not possible:

  1. Put your left cursors on.
  2. Move to the left lane.
  3. Enter the next emergency area, or shoulder of the road.
  4. Put your hazard lights on.
  5. Sit behind the safety barrier where there is one – keep well away from traffic.
  6. Call National Highways at 0300 123 5000then Crash Provider for help.

Sam RkenhDecember 23, 2022 18:33

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List of ways to encounter problems tonight

  • M1 near Toddington Services
  • A12 and A120 to Colchester
  • M3/A303 junction at Basingstoke
  • Along the M4 motorway including Hambrooke and west of Newport in Wales
  • M5 at Exeter
  • M6 in Walsall
  • M11 near Stansted Airport
  • M42 at Solihull
  • M55 flood
  • M60 near Eccles
  • M90 Queensferry in Scotland

Sam RkenhDecember 23, 2022 17:12

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AA warns that it gets even more crowded at Christmas

Many common roads are damaged by traffic jams today, including collisions on the M1 and M25 which are partially closed due to flooding.

AA has seen 9,000 downtimes to date, with more expected as the country’s last chief of office workers go home, or beyond.

AA RoadWatch is reporting problems across the network, including on the M1 near Toddington Services, the A12 and A120 at Colchester and the M11 near Stansted Airport.

Edmund King, AA President, said: “The wet weather has played a part in increasing congestion on the roads, which were already more congested due to the constant rail strikes. The rain also led to more collapses in the potholes, like holes, where puddles tended to hide the potholes.

Our 5 star patrols work really hard to rescue drivers and get them back on their way. Some of these breakdowns could have been avoided by drivers performing basic checks before their adventure.”

Alice MurphyDecember 23, 2022 16:22

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ICYMI: All rail strike dates confirmed for January 2023

The ASLEF train drivers union has announced that its members will strike for wages on Thursday 5 January 2023, joining their RMT counterparts in taking an industrial strike in the first week of the new year and leaving rail commuters stranded for five consecutive days.

ASLEF, which represents 96 per cent of train drivers in England, Scotland and Wales, announced that workers at 15 companies, including Avanti West Coast, Chiltern Railways, CrossCountry, East Midlands Railway and Great Western Railway, had voted to strike.

My colleague Joe Somerlad has more below:

Matt MathersDecember 23, 2022, 16:00

#Train #strikes #travel #disruption #Christmas #Eve

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