Wakefield bus disruption: All Arriva services cancelled as union bus strikes continue

The Arriva bus strikes continue on into a third week with all services cancelled.

By Leanne Clarke
Monday, 20th June 2022, 10:49 am
Updated Monday, 20th June 2022, 10:51 am

Talks between Arriva and Unite last week broke down with the bus company and union members unable to resolve the 'indefinite' strike action.

The industrial action by Unite members started at 2am on Monday, June 6, halting services in Wakefield and the whole of West Yorkshire and is to last for 'for an undisclosed period of time'.

The strikes have caused significant disruption, with no Arriva services running across the region until the industrial action ends.

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The Arriva bus strikes continue on into a third week with all services cancelled.

Arriva and Unite continue to dispute the reasons behind the strike with the bus company rejecting claims that their pay offer was just a 4.1 per cent increase.

Unite says that German-owned Arriva’s low pay across Yorkshire means bus workers are struggling to make ends meet amid the cost of living crisis. Newly recruited bus drivers are paid only £9.78 an hour - just 28 pence above the minimum wage.

Arriva has said it is 'extremely disappointed' at Unite's decision not to ballot their members on a new pay offer.

In a statement following Thursday's talks, Arriva Yorkshire said they had presented a further increased pay offer to Unite for our colleagues.

They said: "We were hopeful talks would lead to a positive outcome and the ending of strike action across Yorkshire.

"However, we’re extremely disappointed at Unite's ongoing decision to not ballot their members on this offer.

"Our customers will no doubt share this frustration as strikes will continue to have a negative impact on our communities.

"We repeat our call for the strike to be suspended and for the union to take our offer to our employees so that communities can access vital bus services."

Phil Bown, Unite's regional officer, apologised for the disruption to passengers but said drivers have no intention of standing down.

"The passengers are collateral damage which is unfortunate. I do feel sorry for them and I want to apologise for the inconvenience but my members can't continue putting up with what they do," he said.

"We have been trying to resolve this for eight months without hurting passengers but Arriva aren't interested. They are the ones that have caused the strike, no one else."