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Renewed calls for rail dispute resolution

As the Transport Committee recommends sectors like hospitality are afforded protection in upcoming rail legislation, UKHospitality is urging Government, rail unions and companies to resume negotiations.

With £3.5 billion in lost sales already racked up as a result of ongoing rail strikes and more strike days in September and October, UKHospitality is urging all parties to resume negotiations as a matter of urgency.

What does the Committee recommend?

The Transport Committee, following evidence sessions that UKHospitality gave evidence to, published a report that outlines nine tests that proposed minimum service levels must meet.

One of those tests is:

  • A minimum service level for rail should protect industries, such as the night-time economy, that cannot adopt flexible and remote working patterns on strike days.

Our response

Our Chief Executive Kate Nicholls said: “As we have seen over the past year, hospitality businesses and their staff continue to suffer as collateral damage as a result of ongoing rail strikes.

The elephant in the room is the complete lack of progress made in recent months by the negotiating parties.

“It’s time that everyone involved gets back round the table to reach a resolution that sees the end to rail strikes.

“While the Transport Committee is absolutely right to point out that sectors acutely affected by rail strikes, like hospitality, are properly considered and protected by future legislation, the real priority needs to be reaching a resolution to the current dispute.

This is especially important for hospitality, as we approach the busy Christmas period, the revenues of which are often crucial to help venues through the fallow period of January to March.

“Without an urgent end to this dispute, the £3.5 billion that hospitality has lost in sales will only continue to grow and that is not good for the thousands of hospitality businesses and the millions of people they employ.”