Fresh talks to be held on train dispute

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FRESH talks aimed at resolving the year-long dispute over the role of conductors on Southern Railway are to be held next week.

Leaders of the RMT union will meet with the company on May 15.

Conductors have taken 31 days of strike action in the past year in protest at changes to their role.

Southern said it is axing 14 trains a night to allow maintenance and improvement work – but none affecting Portsmouth. The cuts will affect services from Sunday night to Thursday night when the new timetable starts on May 21.

Friday and Saturday night services will not be changed.

Services affected include those departing London Victoria between 12.05am and 4.52am.

A spokesman said: ‘The work will help Network Rail deliver critical elements of a £300m improvement plan that was announced by the government in January, which will improve our services on the UK’s busiest, most congested network.’