Public still largely supporting train strikes which have left Robin Hood Line shut for a week

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Rail users across parts of north Nottinghamshire are starting 2023 with no trains to catch as the latest strike action by the RMT and ASLEF unions takes place.

As has often been the case during strikes by the RMT in particular, industrial action has meant the closure of the Robin Hood Line between Nottingham and Worksop – leaving towns like Mansfield, Hucknall, Bulwell, Kirkby and Sutton with no rail service.

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East Midlands Railway, which operates services on the Robin Hood Line, is still running a skeleton service on mainline and regional routes out of Nottingham.

There are no services on the Robin Hood Line until Sunday this week due to fresh rail strikesThere are no services on the Robin Hood Line until Sunday this week due to fresh rail strikes
There are no services on the Robin Hood Line until Sunday this week due to fresh rail strikes

But the company says it is unable to run local routes like the Robin Hood Line, because of the impact the strike has on signal operations along the route and a lack of train staff.

An EMR spokesman said: “This strike action is taking place across Network Rail and 14 train companies and heavily impacts the ability to operate signalling – especially in the east, due to the type of infrastructure – and to staff passengers trains.

“It is therefore not possible for us to continue to operate the same level of service as we would normally, and a number of lines of routes – including the Robin Hood Line – are closed.”

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Despite the disruption, many passengers who would use the Robin Hood Line and are being disrupted by these strikes, are still supporting the unions and the industrial action.

Comments on social media have included:

“Total incompetence of this Tory government has led to rampant inflation, I fully support any worker fighting to keep up!”

“Supporting those standing up for for fair pay and working conditions, even if their actions cause you inconvenience, is what any decent, honest person should be doing.”

“Solidarity with the strikers that the public still support – unlike this Government.”

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One poster also highlighted the reasons for the ongoing strike action, saying: “The general public don’t necessarily understand the changes being introduced to maintenance workers’ terms and conditions, they don’t understand the implications of a 50 per cent reduction to safety checks, how shutting down ticket offices will impact users, alienate older customers and those less technically inclined, the dangers of no guards or station staff.

“This Government is not interested in settling this dispute, this country should be investing in a better rail infrastructure and service.

“Ticket fares increase every single year and profits go to private hands, they’re not reinvested.

“Almost 70 per cent support rail nationalisation – so why won’t this Government make that happen?”

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However, there are also people getting fed up with the disruption and also voiced their opinions on social media.

Comments have included:

"They (the unions and strikers) should be disgusted with themselves. The only people suffering are the general public that are trying to get to work to a job earning much less than the strikers in many cases. I hope the Government continue to ignore them, the strikers cannot be allowed to win.”

"While this essential service is postponed by the strikes, both parties should be fined on a daily basis until a resolution is found.”

The RMT union has been contacted for comment.