Most of SWR network closed during May strikes

Image: A SWR train at Chiswick Station

No service on Hounslow Loop line during strikes

South Western Railway (SWR) has announced that most of its network will be closed during expected strike action in May.

Drivers from the ASLEF union are striking over a long-running dispute on pay and conditions on Tuesday 7 May. Trains will run only on a limited number of lines that day.

Stations on the Hounslow Loop including Chiswick, Brentford, Syon Lane, Kew Bridge and Isleworth will be closed. There will be shuttle services from Waterloo to Basingstoke, Feltham via Twickenham, Guildford via Woking and Woking only.

A significantly reduced service from Feltham will call at Putney and Wandsworth Town. Wimbledon will be served by trains out of Woking.

Trains will only run between 7.00am and 7.00pm.

There will be no services to stations such as Southampton Central, Portsmouth Harbour, Windsor & Eton Riverside, Reading or Exeter St Davids.

On Monday 6 May, the Early May Bank Holiday, a revised service will run due to both an overtime ban by the ASLEF union and engineering work in the Aldershot, Reading, Salisbury and Winchester areas.

From Wednesday 8 to Saturday 11 May, there will also be a revised service due to the overtime ban.

Image: Aslef General Secretary Mick Whelan

No end in sight for long-running dispute

Mick Whelan, Aslef’s general secretary, said:

“Drivers would not vote to strike if they thought an offer was acceptable.

“They don’t. And that offer – now a year old – is dead in the water.”

A spokesperson for the Rail Delivery Group, which represents rail companies, said:

“This wholly unnecessary strike action called by the ASLEF leadership will sadly disrupt customers and businesses once again, while further damaging the railway at a time when taxpayers are continuing to contribute an extra £54 million a week just to keep services running.

“We continue to seek a fair agreement with the ASLEF leadership which both rewards our people, gives our customers more reliable services and makes sure the railway isn’t taking more than its fair share from taxpayers.”

SWR has apologised for the distuption to services.

“We are very sorry for the disruption that this industrial action will cause and are very thankful for our customers’ continued patience.”