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Virgin Trains confirms industrial action called off

Press Release   •   Dec 21, 2017 15:09 GMT

Virgin Trains has confirmed that industrial action affecting its services on west coast on 22 December 2017 and 5, 8, 26, 29 January 2018 has been called off and that it is planning to run a full timetable on Friday 22 December.

Phil Whittingham, Managing Director for Virgin Trains on the west coast, said: “We’re pleased that we’ve come to an agreement with the RMT and TSSA unions, and can focus on providing the best possible service to our customers. We’ll do everything we can to run a full service on Friday 22 December, but because the strike has been called off at the last-minute there may be some cancellations. We’ll be working hard to make sure our customers can make it home as quickly and easily as possible for Christmas.”

Virgin Trains recommends customers still check their journey before they travel. This is because the rosters put in place for tomorrow cover roles not affected by this action and will have to be completely re-drawn. The revised timetable will not be live on Virgin Trains website until the early hours of Friday morning.

About Virgin Trains:

Stagecoach and Virgin are working in partnership to operate the East Coast and West Coast inter-city routes under the Virgin Trains brand. Together, they are on track to revolutionise rail travel across the UK.

The combined network connects some of the nation’s most iconic destinations including Glasgow, Liverpool, Birmingham, Manchester, Edinburgh, Newcastle, Leeds, York and London.

Virgin Trains is committed to delivering a high speed, high frequency service, offering shorter journey times, more comfortable travel and excellent customer service. Customers consistently rate Virgin Trains as one of the top long-distance rail franchise operators in the National Rail Passenger Survey (NRPS) commissioned by industry watchdog, Transport Focus.

On the East Coast route, £140m is being invested to create a more personalised travel experience. We have already invested over £40m in our existing fleet, including £21m refurbishing the interiors and £16m towards improving the engines of our trains. Customers can now benefit from 42 additional services between Edinburgh and London every week, and an extra 22 Saturday services between Leeds and London – a total of 1.74 million additional seats since May 2016. 2018 will see the introduction of completely new Azuma trains being built in the UK by Hitachi.

The West Coast route has a proud record of challenging the status quo - from introducing tilting Pendolino trains, to a pioneering automated delay repay scheme and becoming the first franchised rail operator to offer m-Tickets for all ticket types.

Working together, the partnership railway of the public and private sectors has published a long-term plan, called In Partnership for Britain’s Prosperity, to change and improve Britain’s railway. The plan will secure almost £85bn of additional economic benefits to the country and contains four commitments which will see rail companies: strengthen our economic contribution to the country; improve customers’ satisfaction; boost the communities we serve; and, create more and better jobs in rail. For more information go to Britain Runs on Rail.

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