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UPDATE: Rail Strike Action To Take Place During School Half Term

Train driver's union ASLEF has announced industrial action by its members next week on Wednesday and Saturday (May 31 and June 3) - and the RMT will strike on Friday (June 2).

Govia Thameslink Railway (GTR) - which operates Southern, Thameslink, Great Northern and Gatwick Express - strongly urges customers to plan ahead and check their travel between Wednesday, May 31 and Saturday, June 3 due to industrial action.

There will be no train service in any location on Wednesday, May 31 or Saturday, June 3. Services will also be impacted until around 7am on Sunday, June 4 following the strike.

On Thursday, June 1, there will be knock-on disruption from the previous day’s strike and operators have been notified of a ban on overtime by ASLEF. To help customers plan with fewer short notice alterations, an amended timetable with fewer services will run.

There will be a late start to services in some locations and first trains are likely to be very busy. Passengers may have to queue and may not be able to board their preferred service. Allowing extra time to travel is recommended.

On Friday, June 2, due to strike action by the RMT union, services will be limited across the network, with a later start, an early shut down and no service in some locations [see service map]. 

People planning to travel to the Derby Festival at Epsom Downs Racecourse on both Friday, June 2 (Ladies Day) and Saturday, June 3 (Derby Day) are advised there will be no train services in the area and they will need to make alternative travel plans. 

Gatwick Express will not run between May 31 and June 3, but the airport will continue to be served by Southern and Thameslink on the days train services are operating.

Online journey planners are now updated for 31 May and 1 June, with remaining dates due to appear from 27 May. Passengers are advised to check their journeys in advance at www.nationalrail.co.uk

Jenny Saunders, Customer Services Director, GTR said: 

“We’re sorry that this period of industrial action is again likely to disrupt travel and people’s plans, especially during half term week and for events such as the Derby Festival where no rail services will be available on either Friday or Saturday. 

“We urge passengers to check before they travel for the latest information, particularly as on some days there will be no train services at all and there may be later start-ups, busier services and early finishes on the other days.”

A Rail Delivery Group spokesperson said: 

“We understand the impact of these strikes on individuals and businesses alike, and we can only apologise for this unnecessary and damaging disruption. While we are doing all we can to keep trains running, unfortunately there will be reduced train services between Wednesday 31 May and Saturday 3 June, so our advice is to check before you travel.”

Signalling upgrades will also be taking place this weekend, affecting certain lines.

From Saturday 27 to Sunday 28 May, engineers will also be working to replace track and stabilise a railway cutting between Oxted and East Grinstead and Oxted and Uckfield.

This will mean that buses will replace trains between:

  • Purley and East Grinstead (via Upper Warlingham / Oxted only)
  • Woldingham and East Grinstead (calling at all stations)
  • Woldingham and Uckfield

No trains will run between South Croydon and Oxted, South Croydon to East Grinstead and South Croydon to Uckfield.

Part of the track on this line dates back to the 1980s and needs renewing. Replacing the current track, as well as carrying out earthworks and routine inspections will reduce the risk of having to introduce speed restrictions in the area and will also help prevent disruption to services as a result of landslips.


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