NORTHERN has invited the RMT to take part in fresh talks at ACAS in a bid to end the long-running dispute about on-train staffing.
Three more 24-hour strikes have been called and the first of these walkouts is planned over the Bank Holiday weekend, on Saturday 25 August. Two more are set to follow in early September.
Arriva Rail North managing director David Brown said: “Over the last few weeks, further positive talks have taken place to find a resolution to RMT’s ongoing dispute. Having invited RMT to continue these talks this week, it is very disappointing the union has announced further strikes on 25 August, 1 and 8 September.
“We can only resolve this dispute by working jointly through meaningful talks. I am fully committed to finding a joint solution which is why I have invited RMT to these ACAS mediated talks.”
He added: “As part of modernisation, we want to work with our train crews to agree how we can operate more flexibly and deliver services that better meet the changing needs of our customers. This is why we have been holding talks with RMT in the hope of ultimately delivering for our customers through new, modern working arrangements.
“I have also called on them to suspend their planned industrial action to allow these talks to take place and not disrupt our customers over three busy weekends. There are many events planned for the Bank Holiday and I hope that the union will consider the many families making plans for the last weekend of the summer holidays.”
The RMT has yet to comment.