Network Rail workers will stage further walkouts this week and Merseyrail has released details of its ‘limited service’ on the strike days. Tony McDonough reports
Merseyrail has revealed the “limited service” it will run during several days of strike action this week.
On Tuesday, January 3, Wednesday, January 4, Friday, January 6, and Saturday, January 7, Network Rail staff who are members of the RMT union will stage the latest in a series of walkouts.
Although Merseyrail staff will not take part in the action services on the network will be affected because Network Rail is responsible for signalling and maintenance.
Workers will be taking industrial action from 2am on Tuesday to 1.59am on Thursday and 2am on Friday to1.59am on Sunday. As has been the case during previous strike days, the number of trains Merseyrail can run is limited.
As a result, the operator will run a 45-minute service calling at all stations on selected lines between 7.30am and 6.30pm to help passengers make essential journeys. There will be no rail replacement buses in operation.
However, on Friday and Saturday rail replacement buses will run on the Kirkby line between Kirkby and Moorfields. This is due to planned engineering works relating to the opening of Headbolt Lane station in 2023.
A summary of services that will operate on the strike days is as follows.
- Chester and Ellesmere Port lines: No trains will operate between Chester and Rock Ferry or Ellesmere Port and Rock Ferry. Trains will run every 45 minutes between Rock Ferry and Liverpool Central, calling at all stations.
- New Brighton line: Trains will run every 45 minutes, calling at all stations.
- West Kirby line: Trains will run every 45 minutes, calling at all stations.
- Southport line: Trains will run every 45 minutes, calling at all stations.
- Hunts Cross line: No trains will operate between Liverpool Central and Hunts Cross.
- Ormskirk line: On Tuesday and Wednesday trains will run every 45 minutes, calling at all stations. On Friday and Saturday two trains will run per 45 minutes, calling at all stations to support the increased number of passengers expected to travel on the line as a result of the Kirkby line being closed for engineering work.
- Kirkby line: On Tuesday and Wednesday trains will run every 45 minutes, calling at all stations. There will be no services on the Kirkby line on Friday and Saturday.
On Thursday train services will begin at approximately 7am. A limited rail replacement bus service will be in operation from the busiest stations prior to 7am. Passengers are advised to visit the Merseyrail website for full details or speak to a member of station staff.
On Sunday, January 8, a normal timetable will operate except for the Kirkby and Hunts Cross lines. These are affected by the planned engineering work.
Passengers planning to travel on the Kirkby Line from January 9 onwards will also notice some changes to timetables, as preparations continue for the new fleet of trains. Full details will be available on station posters and the Merseyrail website in due course.
Jane English, acting managing director at Merseyrail, said: “Merseyrail has worked closely with Network Rail to ensure we are able to run the best service possible on these strike days and allow passengers to make essential journeys.
“We would like to apologise for the disruption caused once again to our passengers as a result of the action being taken by Network Rail signallers and maintenance staff.