Northern Rail strike: Which services are affected this weekend?


The next in a series of six days of strikes by Northern Rail staff on consecutive Saturdays is taking place on 8 September.

This latest round of industrial action started on Saturday 25 August. 

The strikes, which have been confirmed by the Rail, Maritime and Transport (RMT) union, are part of an ongoing dispute over the role of train guards and rail safety. 

This will be the third round of industrial action taken by Northern Rail staff this year, with previous strikes taking place in March and June. 

When will the strikes be happening?

All Arriva Rail North conductors, conductor instruction and train driver members have been told not to book on for duty between 12.01am and 11.59pm on Saturday 8 September, Saturday 15 September, Saturday 22 September and Saturday 29 September. 

Which services will be affected?

More than 70 per cent of usual Northern Rail services will be affected, with very few running before 9am and after 6pm.

I’m going to an event serviced by Northern Rail this weekend. How will my journey be affected?

Events taking place this weekend include Saltaire Festival, Tour of Britain and Penistone Agricultural Show.

Saltaire Festival

There will be three trains per hour to and from Skipton and two trains per hour to and from Leeds. The last train from Saltaire is at 7.12pm.

Tour of Britain (cycling)

There will be one train every two hours between Sheffield and Worksop. The first train from Sheffield is at 6.38am. The last train from Worksop is at 7.07pm.

There will be one train every two hours between Lincoln Central and Worksop. The first train from Lincoln Central is at 8.22am. The last train from Worksop is at 5.06pm.

There will be no Northern service to and from Nottingham. Customers should use Cross Country or East Midlands Trains services.

There will be one train every two hours between Sheffield and Retford. The first train from Sheffield is at 6.38am. The last train from Retford is at 6.57pm.

There will be one train every two hours between Lincoln Central and Retford. The first train from Lincoln Central is at 8.22am. The last train from Retford is at 5.17pm.

Penistone Agricultural Show

There will be one direct service between Penistone and Sheffield during the morning and no afternoon service from Sheffield. The last train from Penistone to Sheffield is at 4.42pm.

There will be one train per hour to and from Barnsley during the morning and one train in the afternoon. The last train from Penistone to Barnsley is at 4.42pm.

There will be an hourly service between Penistone and Huddersfield during the morning and two trains in the afternoon. The last train from Penistone to Huddersfield is at 3.17pm.

All customers are advised to check before travelling and, where necessary, may want to seek alternative modes of transport. Check the Northern Rail website for more details about all services affected. 

Why are the strikes taking place? 

The owner of Northern Rail, Arrival Rail North, a subsidiary of the German national railway Deutsche Bahn, wants to operate driver-only services with automatic doors, a move RMT argues is putting profits before public safety. 

RMT general secretary, Mick Cash, said: “RMT committed to talks in good faith with Northern, but instead of making progress towards a settlement that matches the best practice in the rail industry as negotiated elsewhere, the company have opted instead to play fast and loose, making a mockery of the exercise.

“Our reps know when they are being strung along and it’s that attitude from the company that has forced us to announce this next phase of action. 

“RMT members on Arriva Rail North have been in dispute for well over a year now in a battle to put public safety before private profit and we are angry and frustrated that a genuine opportunity to reach an agreement has been kicked back by the company. 

“German-owned Northern Rail want to run nearly half a million trains a year without a safety critical guard on board in a move that would wreck both safety and access ‎to services and they should listen to their front-line staff and pull back from that plan immediately. 

“RMT recently secured an agreement on Greater Anglia that enshrines the guard guarantee. Similar agreements have also been reached in Wales and Scotland. Arriva Rail North need to do the right thing and come to an agreement that secures a guard on their trains too.”

In a statement to The Independent, Richard Allan, deputy managing director of Northern, said: “The RMT’s announcement of yet more strike action is disappointing and frustrating. This will be a blow for our customers.

“It comes despite Northern proposing and entering into a joint working party with RMT on the future of the on-board role. We have agreed a terms of reference for those talks, agreed to discuss the RMT’s preferred outcome first and then held four days of talks with RMT in recent weeks. 

“Northern is doing everything possible to find a solution to the RMT’s dispute and maintains that talking costs nothing, whilst strike action causes inconvenience to customers and damages the case for long-term investment in rail.” 

Where can I find more information?

All passengers are advised to check the Northern Rail website and social media before travelling. Where possible, passengers may wish to consider alternative modes of transport.  

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