November 26, 2022

A crowd of people wait on the bus line in London during the train strikes

Train strikes will cause travel disruption over Christmas and New Year. (Getty Images)

Train passengers will face more disruption over Christmas and the New Year as rail workers prepare to stage a new round of strikes.

Around 40,000 members of the Rail, Maritime and Transport (RMT) union will take part in eight days of marching over the festive period.

The government has condemned the latest round of industrial action, saying it aims to cause “maximum disruption”.

When are the next train strikes?

Network Rail RMT members and 14 train operating companies will strike on December 13-14, December 16-17, January 3-4 and January 6-7.

These days only a small number of services are to be run on the main lines.

Commuters form long queues for buses outside Victoria station in London during the morning rush hour

The government has condemned the RMT’s industrial action. (Getty Images)

There will also be a ban on overtime across the railways from 18 December to 2 January.

The services facing a strike are:

  • Chiltern Railways

  • Cross-country trains

  • Great Anglia

  • LNER

  • East Midlands Railway

  • c2c

  • Northern trains

  • South East

  • South Western Railway

  • Great Western Railway

  • TransPennine Express

  • Next West Coast

  • West Midlands Trains

Why are the railway workers on strike?

The RMT is in a long-running dispute with train companies over jobs, pay and conditions, as the cost of living crisis grows.

There has been no sign of progress since the first wave of RMT strikes in June, which led to massive disruption. In the months of July, August and October, more departures have been carried out.

RMT general secretary Mick Lynch said: “This latest round of strikes will show how important our members are to the running of this country and will send a clear message that we want a good deal on job security, pay and conditions for our people

“We have been reasonable, but it is impossible to find a negotiated settlement when the dead hand of the government is presiding over these talks.”

Mick Lynch, general secretary of the RMT, at a protest in Westminster, central London

RMT boss Mick Lynch has said the strikes will “send a clear message”. (Getty Images)

Network Rail said it would “not give up” on hopes of a deal but urged the RMT to return to negotiations with “a more realistic appreciation of the situation”.

The Rail Delivery Group said it wanted to reach a “fair deal” after making “real progress” in recent talks with the union.

What has the government said?

The government has asked the RMT and rail operators to resolve the dispute.

A spokesman for the Department for Transport said: “Strike action risks jeopardizing the future of the entire industry.

Rail workers from the National Union of Rail, Maritime and Transport Workers (RMT) stand on the picket line outside Euston station on October 8, 2022 in London, UK, the 11th day of national railway strikes.  More than 40,000 RMT members have been on strike over jobs, pay and conditions.  (photo by Mark Kerrison/In Pictures via Getty Images)

RMT workers are locked in a dispute over jobs, pay and conditions. (Getty Images)

“These strikes are not only hurting the economy, they are cutting off people who need urgent care, children going to school and working families.

“The rail industry faces serious financial challenges and is in desperate need of vital reforms to address them.

“Once again, we urge union leaders to work with employers and reach an agreement that is fair to commuters, taxpayers and workers.”

Watch: RMT union boss Mick Lynch defends Christmas and New Year strikes

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