Rail strike brings most trains in Wales to a standstill
Rail passengers are being urged only to travel if necessary today as only around 20% of normal train services will run on Saturday due to another strike by union members.
More than 40,000 members of the Rail, Maritime and Transport (RMT) union at Network Rail and 15 train operating companies will walk out in a row over jobs, pay and conditions.
Around half of the network will be closed all day and trains will operate only between 7.30am and 6.30pm.
Although Transport for Wales TfW is not involved in the industrial action, a majority of services across the Wales and Borders network are suspended due to the on-going strike.
The only services operating will be on the Core Valley Lines in South Wales and a Cardiff to Newport shuttle, with one train operating hourly in each direction, between 07:30 and 18:30.
Train services will operate between Cardiff Central and Rhymney, Treherbert, Aberdare and Merthyr Tydfil in an hourly service in each direction between 07:30 and 18:30.
No other TfW services across Wales and the Borders network will be able to operate.
Customers are reminded there will be very limited road transport capacity between Radyr and Cardiff before 07:30 and after 18:30, when TfW is unable to operate trains via Llandaf and Cathays.
Ahead of the industrial action, RMT general secretary Mick Lynch wrote to UK Transport Secretary Anne Marie Trevelyan, urging her to “unshackle” the railway companies and allow them to reach a settlement with the rail unions.
Mr Lynch wrote: “I am writing following your comments at the Conservative Party Conference last weekend in which you said that there is a ‘deal to be done’ between the rail unions and train companies in relation to the ongoing industrial disputes.
“I am also hopeful that a negotiated settlement between the RMT and the employers can be reached.
“However, for this to be achieved, your Government must unshackle the train operators who currently take their mandate directly from yourself.”
In a statement, the Department for Transport (DfT) urged union bosses to work with their employers “not against them”.
“For the third time this week, and second weekend in a row we face disruption and disarray on our railways,” a DfT spokesperson said.
“Weekend rail travel has been on the rise since the pandemic as people travel to support their favourite sports teams, meet loved ones or go to events. These plans are all now jeopardised and our economy is damaged as a result.
“Our railway is in desperate need of modernisation but all strikes will do is punish the very people unions claim to stand up for and push passengers further away.
“We urge union bosses to reconsider this divisive action and instead work with their employers, not against them, to agree a new way forward.”
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