Further strike action planned as railway dispute continues

RAIL workers embroiled in a bitter dispute over the role of guards are to take fresh industrial action.

Members of the Rail, Maritime and Transport union on South Western Railway will refuse to work any rest days from February 16 to 19.

The company, which runs services from Portsmouth, Fareham and Havant to London, is one of five operators involved in the long-running rows over staffing which have led to a series of strikes stretching back almost two years.

RMT general secretary Mick Cash said: ‘It is frankly disgraceful that South Western Railway point-blank refuses to engage with the union in meaningful talks over its plans to run trains without a safety-critical guard on board.

‘It is time for the company to get out of the bunker and start talking.’

A spokesman for South Western Railway said: ‘We will do everything we can to minimise the inconvenience to our passengers from the unnecessary action.’

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