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Avanti West Coast issues travel advice ahead of RMT strike action this week

pendolino train
Picture by Adam Fradgley

Customers advised to check before they travel as strike action will mean a much reduced Avanti West Coast service on 16 and 18 March.

  • Avanti West Coast will operate an amended timetable on 16 and 18 March
  • Customers are urged to check before they travel and confirm times of last trains
  • Shorter hours of operation, less frequent stops and a significantly reduced service means trains could be busy

Avanti West Coast is encouraging customers to check before they travel ahead of the upcoming strike days as it prepares to operate a significantly reduced timetable.

Two 24-hour strikes by RMT members across train operators on 16 and 18 March will result in the intercity operator running less than a third of its normal timetable.

With fewer services running and a significantly reduced operation, trains could be busy, and customers are strongly advised to check details before setting off for the station. Those who intend to travel should plan ahead, expect some disruption, and check the details of their last train home. Customers who chose not to travel are able to claim a refund from their point of purchase.

As part of its strike contingency plans, Avanti West Coast will run one train per hour between Euston and each of Manchester, Birmingham, Liverpool, and Preston (with a limited number extended to Carlisle).

These trains will operate during limited hours, with the first train of the day departing Euston just before 8am and the last train of the day from Euston departing mid-afternoon. The significantly reduced timetable will mean North Wales, Shrewsbury, and Blackpool have no Avanti West Coast services on the strike days.

As a result of engineering works, there are no direct trains to Scotland. Rail replacement services to both Glasgow Central and Edinburgh are available from Carlisle, in addition to a number of Scotrail services via Dumfries.

In addition, services on the days following the strikes (17 and 19 March) will start later. Trains running on these days are likely to be extremely busy.

Tickets dated for March 16 and 18 can be used the day before the date on the ticket, or up to and including Tuesday 4 April.

Barry Milsom, Executive Director of Operations and Safety at Avanti West Coast said: “Yet again our customers will have to a face a further disruption to their plans due to this unnecessary strike action.

“I can only thank our customers again for their patience and understanding and urge the RMT and work with us to modernise working practices and develop a railway fit for the 21st century.

“On 16 and 18 March, we will be running a significantly reduced timetable and our customers are advised to check before they travel.”

Due to the different signalling system in use on some parts of the West Coast Main Line, which is more resource-intensive to operate, the intercity operator is unable to stop trains at Stoke-on-Trent and Macclesfield which will not be open.

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