Eastbourne commuters could still face additional strike action from Southern train drivers.
Mick Whelan, general secretary of ASLEF, the train drivers’ union, has set the record straight after deliberately misleading statements made over the weekend by Angie Doll, passenger services’ director of Southern Railways.
Mick said, “Contrary to what Govia Thameslink Railway is claiming, we have not cancelled our ballot for industrial action. Today we informed the company that, after a technical hitch, we are issuing fresh ballot papers. We are determined to get this absolutely right because we know just how litigious GTR is.
“Angie Doll also claimed she now wants to sit down and talk to us. No, she doesn’t. The company has no intention of talking because the company has no intention of negotiating. If it did, it would have done a deal – as ScotRail has done – to solve this problem for passengers, staff, and everyone who has an interest in the proper, and safe, running of a modern railway.
“All Angie Doll wants to do is push the company’s ridiculous plan to put passengers, and jobs at risk, so the company can squeeze even more profit out of the franchise. That’s what she wants. But it’s not what passengers want.”
Mick added, “Today we hope that passengers, taxpayers, and anyone interested in the future of Britain’s railways takes up the open invitation to attend this afternoon’s session of the House of Commons Transport Select Committee where Peter Wilkinson’s toxic influence on our industry will be laid bare for everyone to see.”