Posted 25th November 2022 | No Comments

RMT members accept ScotRail pay settlement

General grades members of the RMT at ScotRail have voted to accept an improved pay offer. The union had recommended that its members accept the deal when it was put to a vote, which closed yesterday. The new terms only apply to ScotRail employees and are not applicable to Network Rail staff in Scotland who are still set to strike in December and January. ScotRail’s head of customer operations Phil Campbell said: ‘We are delighted that RMT members have voted to accept this pay offer. We worked hard to put forward an offer which recognises the hard work of staff, as well as the financial challenges faced by the railway as we recover from the pandemic.’ The offer includes an increase in minimum flat rate pay to £10.50 an hour as well an increase from £500 to £750 for acceptance of technology, consolidated into basic pay, on top of a 5 per cent basic increase. There are other benefits, including a 10 per cent increase in the Sunday Working Allowance. Meanwhile, RMT general secretary Mick Lynch described a meeting yesterday with transport secretary Mark Harper as ‘positive’, but Mr Harper said that although he had a ‘role in the process’ he would not be involved in detailed negotiations.

ASLEF drivers set to walk out tomorrow

Members of ASLEF are set to stage a 24-hour strike at 11 train operating companies tomorrow, as the union’s dispute over pay continues. ASLEF general secretary Mick Whelan said: ‘We regret that passengers will be inconvenienced for another day. We don’t want to be taking this action. Withdrawing our labour is always a last resort for a trade union. We have come to the table, as we always will, in good faith but while the industry continues to make no offer, due to the dodgy deal they signed with the DfT, we have no choice but to take action again.’ The Rail Delivery Group has warned that the strike will cause ‘severe disruption’ on many lines. The operators involved are Avanti West Coast, Chiltern Railways, CrossCountry, East Midlands Railway, Great Western Railway, Greater Anglia, LNER, Northern, Southeastern, TransPennine Express and West Midlands Trains. Some operators will not be running any services at all. However, an ASLEF walkout which had been called on London Overground tomorrow has been suspended, after Overground operator Arriva Rail London had made a new pay offer which has been put to members in a ballot.

Chancellor visits HS2 station site

HS2 CEO Mark Thurston welcomed chancellor of the exchequer Jeremy Hunt and West Midlands Mayor Andy Street to HS2’s interchange station construction site in Solihull yesterday. The Chancellor’s visit followed last week’s Autumn Statement in which he committed to investment in infrastructure and to continue building HS2 to Manchester as well as East West Rail and ‘core’ elements of Northern Powerhouse Rail. Mark Thurston took his guests on a tour of the site to see progress, meet site engineers and apprentices, and to hear how HS2 is already improving the Midlands economy.