'Disgust' after bus strike hits commuters in Devon and Cornwall

Profile image for Western Morning News

By Western Morning News | Friday, October 26, 2012, 06:30

Bus services across Devon and Cornwall are set to be thrown into chaos today after eleventh-hour talks to avert a strike failed.

Disruption in services across the two counties came after First Devon and Cornwall and the RMT union could not agree a pay deal.

On Wednesday, a last-ditch bid by the company to persuade unions to accept a two-year pay deal worth up to 7.1% came to nothing.

Bus drivers, engineers and backroom staff will walk out for 24 hours today. A second one-day strike is planned for November 9.

First's competitors, City Bus in Plymouth, Stagecoach and Western Greyhound, were set to pick up extra fares today.

Yesterday, a spokesman for First Devon and Cornwall said they were "incredibly disappointed" and accused union members of being "selfish".

He said: "The walkout was planned despite a number of very good offers having been tabled by the company, as recently as Wednesday evening.

"Despite lengthy talks and a willingness to negotiate on behalf of the company, an agreement has not been reached. In this current economic climate, we believe this action is very selfish." Union chiefs – who represent 382 of the 675-strong workforce caught up in the dispute – said they "regretted" strike action.

Phil Bialyk, RMT regional organiser said: "We made some progress at the meetings but nothing on the major issues of pay and contracts for new employees. There are still many issues outstanding. One is the lack of trust and confidence our members have in management."

The firm said it would prioritise contracted school and college services in Cornwall, and in Devon it hopes to run services to Tavistock School and a reduced park-and-ride service in Plymouth. All other services are set for disruption.

One pensioner who will find herself caught up in the dispute has said she is "disgusted" by the strike action.

Joan Moore, 69, who lives near St Agnes, Cornwall, said: "It makes me so damn angry they can't get their act together. Rural bus services are not that good at the best of times without this lot making matters worse."

First said it would communicate disruptions via its website, Facebook, Twitter and through posters on buses and at locations.

Tracey Roose, chief executive at Age UK Cornwall, added: "We know older people rely heavily on public transport, so this will have an impact on them. Also, 86% of over-80s do not have access to the internet, making it hard for them to view timetable updates or rescheduling online."



  • Profile image for PaulWhite

    I for one do not see the need to strike in the case of public transport workers.
    Why not do what the Australians do and continue to run the service but refuse to take fares?
    It has the same impact on the company but has no detrimental effect on the travelling public.
    Or is the idea to alienate everyone, company and public alike?

    By PaulWhite at 17:52 on 26/10/12

max 4000 characters

Latest Stories in Tavistock


Local Vouchers

  • Kingfisher Fish & Chips - Medium Cod Chips & Peas only £5.75 OPEN - 7 DAYS A WEEK

    Kingfisher Fish & Chips - Award Winning Fish & Chips

    Medium Cod, Chips & Peas only £5.75 available 7 days a week - No voucher required

    Terms: Opening Hours: Monday to Saturday 12 - 21:00, Sunday 17:00 20:30 Tel: 01752 335567 Open Bank Holiday Monday www.kingfisherfishandchips.co.uktwitter: @Kingfisherdevon

    Contact: 01752421107

    Valid until: Sunday, September 07 2014

  • FREE Personalised Wedding Cake Portion Boxes with Bespoke Wedding Cake Orders Read more: http://www

    Cut Me Off A Slice

    Free cake portion boxes for your guests to take a slice of your wedding cake home with, with every bespoke wedding cake order

    Terms: Boxes limited to no. of portions, subject to availiabilty. Voucher to be shown on initial quote.

    Contact: 07812387181

    Valid until: Tuesday, September 30 2014

  • 3 Bedroom House With Driveway & Garage In Plympton, Plymouth £750pcm

    M&B Residential Lettings

    Comprising Lounge/Diner, Kitchen, Master Bedroom, 2nd & 3rd Bedrooms & Rear Enclosed Garden. Av. Now For 6 Mths & Ongoing. No Smokers/HB. Pets AD

    Terms: **NB: Please be advised that charges are applicable per application and subject to contract. If a guarantor is required there will be an additional fee.  Should the applicants fail the referencing the

    Contact: 01752421825

    Valid until: Sunday, August 31 2014


Local Jobs


Search for...

Min price is bigger than Max price
Min price is bigger than Max price
Min rent is bigger than Max rent