More than 20,000 rail workers will strike on Thursday in a long-running dispute over pay, jobs and conditions – with commuters warning they could face severe disruption to services.
Members of the Rail, Maritime and Transport Union (RMT) will walk out on July 20, 22 and 29 while drivers at Aslef are banned from working overtime this week.
RMT members involved Strikes Including station workers, train managers and catering staff, 14 train companies have been affected.
Read more: Full list of July dates and services affected by industrial action
The industrial action will see variations in services across the country with trains starting later and ending much earlier than normal.
About half of train services will run in some areas, while there will be no service in others.
Evening and morning services may also be affected on days before the strike.
Passengers are advised to check their travel in advance.
RMT general secretary Mick Lynch said the strikes would show the country “how important railway staff are to the running of the rail industry”.
“My team of negotiators and I are available 24/7 to engage with train companies and the government,” he said.
Mr Lynch said neither side had “made any attempt to arrange any meeting or make any reasonable offer that would help us reach a negotiated solution”.
“The government continues to handcuff the companies and will not allow them to present a package that would resolve the dispute,” he added.
Meanwhile, Aslef general secretary Mick Whelan said the union wanted to resolve the dispute.
“Train drivers don’t want to inconvenience the public,” he said.
“We have given the government and the rail operators plenty of opportunities to come to the table but it is clear that they do not want a resolution.
“Our members, the drivers who keep the railway running day in and day out, will not accept the government’s attempts to force our industry into decline.
A Rail Delivery Group spokesman said: “The upcoming rail strike called by the RMT union and the overtime ban by Asliffe will undoubtedly cause some disruption, not only affecting our commuters’ daily journeys but also disrupting families’ plans during the summer holidays.
“This will cause frustration, disappointment and financial stress for tens of thousands of people. We apologize for the inconvenience this has caused and understand the impact on individuals and businesses.
“Whilst we are doing everything we can to keep trains running, unfortunately services will be reduced between July 17 and July 29, so we advise you to check before you travel.
“Advance ticketed passengers can be refunded without any fee if the train for which the ticket is booked is cancelled, delayed or rescheduled.”
Train strikes – full list of July dates Tube and rail services affected by industrial action
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London Underground commuters were also warned to expect disruption next week due to industrial action by the RMT and Aslef in a separate dispute.
A Department for Transport spokesman said: “The Government has met with the rail unions, listened to them and facilitated better offers on pay and reforms. Union leaders must put these fair and reasonable offers to their members to resolve the dispute.”