Virgin Trains ticket staff set to strike in January

More than 200 Virgin Trains ticket office staff are set to strike along the West Coast line in a dispute over cutbacks, it has emerged.

Members of the Transport Salaried Staffs’ Association (TSSA) are due to walk out at 14 mainline stations between London Euston and Glasgow in January, the Independent has reported.

TSSA leader Gerry Doherty said the firm was planning to “cut back on customer services” which could lead to 10% of booking staff losing their jobs.

However, he assured customers that industrial action would not take place during the busy festive season, and Virgin still had weeks to re-negotiate.

If the strike goes ahead, it will affect Euston, Watford, Milton Keynes, Rugby, Coventry, Birmingham International, Birmingham New Street, Wolverhampton, Stafford, Crewe, Manchester Piccadilly, Preston, Carlisle and Glasgow.

Doherty said: “Virgin is just the latest of the privately owned rail companies to cut back on customer services to boost their bottom line during the recession.

“We highlighted last week what it meant to passengers at one station – Coventry – where they had to wait 30 minutes in a 100-metre long queue just to buy a ticket. That will start happening right along this busy line if management get away with these latest cutbacks.”

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