South Western trains strike

I met with Andy Mellors, the MD of SW Trains to ask him about the RMT planned strike on 8 and 9 November. Other local MPs were also present.

Mr Mellors said the company had contingency plans should the strike go ahead. They aimed to run most services, with a few being covered by a replacement bus service. Travellers should go on to their website before travel on the strike days to see the latest position.

The RMT strike threat has arisen over the introduction of new trains to the network. These trains have the capability for driver operated doors. The Company wishes the drivers to carry out this function, but has guaranteed they will roster a guard for every train and each guard will continue to have safety training. The Guard’s role will be to work for and with the passengers more than at present. The Company will be recruiting more staff and will not be making guards redundant.

The new trains are crucial to increasing capacity and improving passenger comfort. They are air conditioned and more spacious.

I stressed the need for the Company and the Union to put passenger needs first, and to seek an answer to their dispute.


  1. Epikouros
    November 2, 2017

    One likes to think that union organised workers strikes are justified because of bad worker pay and conditions and to curtail employers wilful bad practices. Perhaps at some time in their history that had a considerable element of truth. These days it barely about that it is mostly about politics. In fact it is battle by socialists to impose their policies and practices on the economy and society. This struggle is not confined to just trade unions progressives, left wing political parties and dubious vested interest are all engaged in it. If they win and it is looking increasing likely that they will they will end up shooting themselves in the foot. The ricochet from that will cause a lost of collateral damage to the rest of us.

  2. Simon Platt
    November 2, 2017

    “The Guard’s role will be to work for and with the passengers more than at present.” Good. I very rarely travel on South West Trains, but when I do travel on trains locally, typically on routes in to and out of Manchester, guards are noticeable mostly by their absence. I think that’s very poor.

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