Disruption to services as rail strikes return to Wigan

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There are travel problems for Wiganers today as another rail strike brings widespread delays and cancellations.

Services have come to a halt as members of the Rail, Maritime and Transport (RMT) union have gone on strike in a dispute over jobs, pay, pensions and conditions.

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The latest round of strikes sees 14 train companies take action and an estimated 40,000 workers walking out, with picket lines set up outside Wigan Wallgate station.

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Picketers outside Wallgate stationPicketers outside Wallgate station
Picketers outside Wallgate station

Their previous strike in June was the largest the UK had seen in 30 years.

Many Wiganers who commute to Manchester or Liverpool were unable to make their journeys due to the industrial action.

Trains will also be disrupted on Thursday morning, with a later start as employees return to duties.

More strikes will take place in the coming days and a wave of industrial action is planned for next month on the railways.

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RMT general secretary Mick Lynch said: “The rail industry and the Government need to understand that this dispute will not simply vanish.

"Recent proposals from Network Rail fell well short on pay and on safety around maintenance work. And the train operating companies have not even made us a pay offer in recent negotiations.”

Network Rail chief executive Andrew Haines said: “Despite our best efforts to find a breakthrough, I’m afraid there will be more disruption for passengers this week as the RMT seems hell-bent on continuing their political campaigning, rather than compromising and agreeing a deal for their members.

“I can only apologise for the impact this pointless strike will have on passengers, especially those travelling for holidays or attending events.”