No Resolution in Sight in South Western Railway Dispute

Saturday strikes to be held all through November by the RMT

RMT members demonstrate outside the Department of Transport

The five day strike on South Western Railway (SWR) has finished but a resolution of the dispute appears to be no closer. The RMT seems set to proceed with continued action on four successive Saturdays.

The forthcoming strike dates are:

Saturday 3 November
Saturday 10 November
Saturday 17 November
Saturday 24 November

SWR has stated a reduced service will run on their network on strike days but timetables may vary from day to day. They will publish details closer to the time.

SWR say they aim to run 60% of trains but, during previous strike days, services on the Hounslow Loop have been severely reduced or cancelled altogether. On Saturday 3 November there will be no service on the Hounslow Loop according to the latest update from SWR. However they will be laying on extra trains to deal with the crowd attending the rugby international at Twickenham.

The union say the strikes are necessary because management is refusing to engage in serious talks over guards whereas SWR say the RMT is ‘needlessly’ disrupting the service.

RMT General Secretary, Mick Cash said, "There's a simple solution to ‎this dispute and it means SWR stop playing with words and negotiate the guard guarantee that reflects the safety values of the agreements RMT has pinned down in other parts of the rail industry.”

A SWR spokesperson said, “We have guaranteed a guard to be rostered on every single service, and our growth plans mean more guards, not fewer. It is time for the union to stop spreading myths and causing misery to our customers and colleagues, and commit to resolving this dispute.

“If the union decides to continue with its unnecessary action, we will do everything we can to keep our customers moving and reduce disruption.”

SWR are providing live updates on services during the strikes.

October 31, 2018