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West Midlands Railway passengers face further Saturday train service disruption

By Andrew Turton | Transport | Published:

Train passengers face a day of disruption in the West Midlands despite a strike being called off.

A reduced West Midlands Railway service on Saturday is set to bring disruption

News of the cancelled strike affecting West Midlands Railways services came too late to withdraw Saturday's reduced timetable.

West Midlands Railway said "far fewer" trains will run than normal as the operator will only provide a "very basic service".

It came as West Midlands Railway has been beset with problems, including unreliability and cancellations, over recent months.

The Saturday strike action, due to a row over over train guards, started on November 16.

But the Rail, Maritime and Transport (RMT) union suspended this weekend's action following talks.

Staff will be considering a new offer covering the role of conductors on the new trains.

In a statement, general secretary Mick Cash said: "Due to the receipt of an improved offer on the future role of the guard on West Midlands Trains, all action, including this Saturday, has been suspended and we will be holding a referendum vote with a recommendation to accept the deal."

A West Midlands Trains spokesman said: “Both sides have worked hard on our shared vision to keep a conductor on every passenger train with safety critical duties.”

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Passengers are being advised to check before they travel.

Britain's longest-running rail franchise comes to an end on Saturday after more than 22 years as Virgin Trains operates its final services into Wolverhampton and Birmingham

Virgin Trains, Cross Country, Chiltern Railways and Transport for Wales are due to run a normal Saturday timetable.

It comes as the final Virgin Trains service on the West Coast Main Line is run on Saturday.

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The firm, which began serving the West Coast Main Line in March 1997, is being replaced by Avanti West Coast.

Avanti West Coast will replace Virgin Train services

The final service will be the 9.42pm departure from London Euston to Wolverhampton.

Avanti West Coast is owned by First Trenitalia, a partnership between Aberdeen-based transport company FirstGroup and Italian firm Trenitalia.

The first Avanti West Coast trains will run on Sunday.

Andrew Turton

By Andrew Turton
Digital Journalist

Digital journalist based at the Express & Star's head office in Wolverhampton. Interested in breaking news and social media. Get in touch on Twitter @aturton_star or andrew.turton@expressandstar.co.uk

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