Train strikes have become a recurring issue these past few years, especially for Kent. After the pandemic, British railways, like any other organisation, were extremely affected, leaving them to be under pressure to save money.
Rail cancellations have hit record highs, with more than 314,000 partly or fully closed in Great Britain this past year.
Kent is now experiencing one of it’s biggest strikes yet with 102 trains stations taking part in a total of four days of no trains between May and June.
Why are the train strikes happening?
A proposal from the 14 railway companies’ representative group, the Rail Delivery Group (RDG), would have given rail staff a 5% salary increase in 2022. It would then discuss reforms with individual operators prior to a salary increase for the following year.
RMT members decided on May 5 to extend the strike’s authorisation for an additional six months.
Meanwhile, a two-year offer that would have given drivers a 4% salary boost this year and a 4% pay hike in 2022 was rejected by the Aslef union.
Separately, on March 20, RMT members agreed to a revised offer from Network Rail, putting an end to that disagreement.
According to the union, the offer represented a salary increase ranging from 14.4% for the lowest paid grades to 9.2% highest paid
⚠️Strike action affects our services:
❌On Friday 12 May, there are no trains running and no replacement buses.
⬇️On Saturday 13 May, a limited service will run and some routes will be closed.
ℹ️ Check Before You Travel: https://t.co/Imud6ZTxSn #RailStrike pic.twitter.com/8Jvs5UuJO1
— Southeastern (@Se_Railway) May 9, 2023
Canterbury West, Ramsgate and Ashford International are the only Kent based stations open on May 13.
Routes from Ramsgate to St.Pancras London will still run on May 13, but they will be limited.
Timetables and journey planners on the Southeastern app were updated on May 6.
Who could be affected?
The strikes affect Kent residents that work in London with limited services going directly to St.Pancras London could possibly cause commotion as everyone will be trying to make sure they’re able to get on the train.
The women’s FA cup final between Manchester United and Manchester City is set to take place during the strikes, so beloved football fans may struggle to watch the final live at Wembley.
The Eurovision final in Liverpool this weekend is also effected as some attendees may not be able to make it.
Those travelling to Liverpool on Friday or Saturday are being advised to book other means of travel. Coach services including mega-bus have put on extra buses for the occasion.
Kent stations that will not run any Southeastern, Southern or Thames-link:
- Ashford International
- Bat and Ball
- Borough Green and Wrotham
- Canterbury East and West
- Chestfiled & Swalecliffe
- Dover Priory
- Dumpton Park
- Dunton Green
- East Farleigh
- East Malling
- Ebbsfleet International
- Edenbridge Town
- Farningham Road
- Folkestone Central and West
- Ham Street
- Herne Bay
- High Brooms
- Maidstone Barracks
- Maidstone East and West
- Martin Mill
Southeastern railway stated: “We’re sorry, but on 12 May, 31 May and 3 June, there’ll be no Southeastern, Southern or Thameslink train services from our stations.
“Please do not attempt to travel by train on these days.
“On 13 May, we’ll only be able to run a limited service and some routes will be closed. Trains that are running will be busier and are likely to start later and finish earlier.
“Please check before you travel and check your entire journey.”