Mansfield and Ashfield passengers face disruption as rail staff plan strike

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Train managers and senior conductors to strike again on East Midlands Railway in separate disputes over safety, pay and conditions.

Rail union RMT said train managers and senior conductors on East Midlands Railway will be striking again in separate disputes.

East Midlands Railway operates main line services between London and the region, as well as local services, including the Robin Hood Line between Nottingham and Worksop, via Mansfield and Ashfield.

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An RMT spokesman said: “The action is taking place after the union suspended ongoing strike action and participated in weeks of negotiations which have resulted in the failure of the company to provide offers in writing that would resolve either dispute.”

One of East Midlands Railway's new electric trains for its EMR Connect services between London and Corby.One of East Midlands Railway's new electric trains for its EMR Connect services between London and Corby.
One of East Midlands Railway's new electric trains for its EMR Connect services between London and Corby.

Senior conductors are in dispute over pay, conditions and contract issues, while train managers are unhappy with new working arrangements regarding EMR’s new electric trains operating between London and Corby.

Both train managers and senior conductors are instructed not to book on for any shifts that start between 12.01am on December 3 and 11.59pm the following day.Mick Lynch, RMT General Secretary, said: “RMT has been left with no choice but to put strike action back on EMR for our train managers and senior conductors.“It is astonishing that after weeks of negotiations, during which in good faith we suspended industrial action and believed progress was being made, the company has failed to make offers in writing to bring these disputes to a close.“The strike action will send management a clear message that their utter contempt for the negotiations and their hard-working staff is totally unacceptable.“The union remains available for talks in both disputes.”

An EMR spokesman said: “We are disappointed and surprised by this latest threat of strike action.

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“As we indicated to RMT representatives on Friday, we are preparing to put our new offer in writing to its National Executive on November 26. This would be our fourth offer in a two-year period in an attempt to resolve the dispute.

“Threats of such action are particularly unhelpful at a time when talks were reaching a critical stage.

“They are designed to cause disruption to customers returning to rail travel and will undoubtedly impact businesses who are still struggling with the effects of the pandemic.

“We have noted that the strike dates have been specifically selected to disrupt the Lincoln Christmas market and we will be working on contingency plans to try to protect key services over the weekend of December 3 and 4.”

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