Train operators have today given an early warning of planned rail strikes which will affect passengers of Transport for Wales and GWR later this week.
The RMT union has announced four 24-hour strikes – on Thursday March 16, Saturday March,18 , Thursday March 30 and Saturday, April 1.
During the period a revised timetable will operate across several train operators, including GWR, and those traveling are being warned to check both their outward and return journeys.
GWR warns that on strike days (Thursday 16 and Saturday 18 March) only an extremely reduced service will operate on a limited number of routes. The train operator is telling people that many parts of its network will have no service at all. Services will also start later and finish earlier and journeys will need to be completed before 6.30pm.
Those travelling are advised to check their journey, and online journey planners have been updated accordingly. Visit www.gwr.com/strike for details.
Passengers are warned that trains will be busier than usual because there will not be the normal service frequency. Other train operators are also affected by this action, so onward travel could also be affected.
On Sunday 2 April, Plymouth Argyle take on Bolton Wanderers at Wembley and all direct trains between Plymouth and London Paddington before and after the match will be reservation only – you must have a seat reservation to travel on these trains. To help people board safely a queuing system will be in place at Plymouth and London Paddington. Customers without seat reservations will not be able to board reservation only trains.
Where trains can operate, they are expected to be extremely busy and bus replacement services are not able to be provided.
GWR is set to provide extra trains for the majority of this year’s Cheltenham Festival but warns that the planned strike action will mean an extremely limited service will run on Thursday March 16 and Saturday March 18and customers are warned to seek alternative ways to travel to/from the racecourse.
To help, those who have purchased rail tickets for strike days can claim a full refund or amend their ticket; those who travel and are delayed may be entitled to Delay Repay compensation if they are delayed by 15 minutes or more. Tickets will be valid for travel on alternative days on GWR services as follows:
Tickets for Thursday March 16 and Saturday March 18 can be used on the day before or up to and including Tuesday 21 March
Tickets for Thursday March 30 and Saturday April 1 can be used on the day before or up to and including Tuesday 4 April
Season-ticket holders can apply for compensation through the Delay Repay scheme.