No trains on Uckfield Line – what the RMT union says

Uckfield Line rail passengers face a week of disruption from today until Friday with no services timetabled.

A strike by conductor-members of the RMT union has forced Southern to reduce services across the network.

On some routes – including the Uckfield Line – there will be no trains.

No rail replacement buses


The company is not offering rail replacement buses.

A statement from Southern was published on Friday.

The RMT Union has written to Charles Horton, the managing director of Govia Thameslink Railway (GTR) which runs the Southern franchise.

Union’s letter to Southern MD


The RMT letter said:

Dear Charles,

Role of the Guard and Extension of DOO – Southern (GTR)

I am writing in response to your open letter to your customers and other publicity issued to your customers during the ACAS talks.

We have had intensive talks under the auspices of ACAS over the past two days and I am hoping that you will be able to authorise your team, at the reconvened talks today [August 5], to accept the following. Should you do so then my Union will suspend the strikes called for next week. This would, obviously be welcomed by your customers and my members.

The offer this union is making to Southern is as agreed with Abellio Scotrail this week, an agreement that enabled us to suspend our industrial action.

So there can be no doubt I will set down the 4 key elements of Scotrail’s offer that was agreed.

1.    Scotrail guaranteed a Conductor on every train.

2.    Scotrail guaranteed that the Conductor will retain their full competency (rules, track safety, evacuation).

3.     ScotRail confirmed that trains operating these services will not run without a competent Conductor on board.

4.    These proposals, including the above guarantees, are subject to ScotRail and the RMT entering into discussion about, and agreeing to, a method of train dispatch for these services. Once this proposal and the method of dispatch are agreed it will be adopted for the Abellio ScotRail franchise and will apply beyond.

This is a sensible way forward and would enable us, like I said, to suspend the industrial action. We would speedily meet to discuss and agree train despatch, something we are doing with Scotrail.

I feel that this is a positive way forward that will bring an end to this dispute and enable Southern to start running a full service again. I will keep my National Executive Committee on stand-by today so that should you accept the above then a decision can be taken to, hopefully, suspend all industrial action.

I await your urgent response.

Yours sincerely,
Mick Cash
General Secretary

Read what our independent columnist Observer thinks 

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