Avanti West Coast issues travel advice for latest industrial action
Avanti West Coast issues travel advice to customers as services set to be disrupted by RMT and ASLEF strike action.
- Five days of strike action to affect Avanti West Coast services from 3 January
- Significantly reduced timetable and operating hours on 3, 4, 6, and 7 January due to strike action by RMT members
- Customers told not to travel on 5 January as no Avanti West Coast services will operate due to industrial action by drivers
Avanti West Coast has issued travel advice for the first week of January when its services will be significantly disrupted by RMT and ASLEF strike action.
Customers are strongly advised to only travel if absolutely necessary on Tuesday 3, Wednesday 4, Friday 6 and Saturday 7 January, as the intercity operator will be running a greatly reduced timetable on these days. This is in response to two 48-hour strikes by RMT coordinated across train operators and Network Rail.
Following the first 48-hour strike by RMT, the train driver’s union, ASLEF, will walkout on Thursday 5 January and customers are being told not to travel on this day, as Avanti West Coast will be unable to run any trains.
On 3, 4, 6 and 7 January during RMT industrial action, Avanti West Coast will run one train per hour between Euston and each of Manchester, Liverpool, and Preston with a limited service to Glasgow as part of its contingency plans.
These trains will operate during limited hours – with the first train of the day departing Euston at 08.30am and the last train of the day from Euston departing mid-afternoon.
The greatly reduced timetable will mean North Wales, Shrewsbury, Blackpool, and Edinburgh have no Avanti West Coast services on the strike days.
With fewer services running and a considerably reduced operation, trains could be busy, and customers are strongly advised to only travel if absolutely necessary. Customers who do travel should plan ahead, expect disruption, and check the details of their last train home.
During ASLEF’s walkout on 5 January, Avanti West Coast will be unable to operate any of its services for the whole day and customers are advised to not attempt travel.
With no Avanti West Coast trains running to and from all destinations across the network, customers are being told not travel on 5 January and instead claim a refund, seek alternative transport, or rearrange journeys for another date.
The action, which has been coordinated by ASLEF across other train operators, means options to travel by rail will be extremely limited on the West Coast Main Line between London, Scotland, and North Wales. Many destinations will have no rail connectivity on 5 January and rail replacement services will not be in place either.
Customers with tickets for 3, 4, 6 and 7 January (purchased before 22 November) or 5 January (purchased before 20 December) can claim a full refund from their point of purchase. Alternatively, tickets dated 3 to 7 January can be used the day before the date on the ticket or up to and including 10 January. Avanti West Coast is recommending customers make their journeys on 8 to 10 January.
Barry Milsom, Executive Director of Operations and Safety at Avanti West Coast, said: “While our customers should be making journeys with us to return to work or school after the Christmas break, they’re facing nearly a whole week of disruption due to more strike action by RMT and ASLEF. The start of the New Year sees journeys impacted once again and I would like to thank our customers for their continued patience and understanding.
“Two 48-hour walkouts by the RMT means we’re operating a significantly reduced timetable on 3, 4, 6 and 7 January, so customers should only travel if absolutely necessary on these days. On 5 January we will have no services due to ASLEF’s strike, and we’re telling customers not to travel. Any customers with tickets for 3 to 7 January are strongly advised to make their journey on alternative days or claim a full refund.
“We all need to be working together for the long-term benefit of our people and customers. So, we will continue our industry reform talks with the RMT and ASLEF so we can develop a railway fit for the 21st century.”
Due to the different signalling system in use on some parts of the West Coast Main Line, which is more resource-intensive to operate, the intercity operator is unable to stop trains at Stoke-on-Trent, Macclesfield, Stockport, as well as Runcorn on 3, 4, 6 and 7 January and these stations will not be open.
Avanti West Coast will also not serve Wilmslow due to operational reasons.
Avanti West Coast
Notes to editors
For more information about the impact of the strike action on Avanti West Coast’s services and the reduced strike day timetables, visit: https://www.avantiwestcoast.co.uk/travel-information/plan-your-journey/strike
About Avanti West Coast
Avanti West Coast, operator of intercity rail services on the West Coast Main Line, is a joint venture between FirstGroup and Trenitalia, delivering a cleaner, greener railway that drives the West Coast forward.
For the latest news, visit the Avanti West Coast Media Centre: https://newsdesk.avantiwestcoast.co.uk/
Press Office: 0845 000 3333