ASLEF calls on Chris Grayling to come clean

10 August 2017

Mick Whelan, general secretary of ASLEF, the train drivers’ union, has challenged Transport Secretary Chris Grayling to come clean after the DfT announced that a Dutch/Japanese consortium has been awarded the West Midlands rail franchise.

The Secretary of State for Transport said rail passengers will get new, longer, trains with more seats, and more space, as nearly £1 billion is invested in services on the West Midlands network.

‘What I want to know is how much of that £1 billion investment is coming from the private company which has been awarded the franchise by Mr Grayling’s department? And how much is coming from the taxpayer?

‘It’s time for Mr Grayling to come clean about where the money is coming from. We should be told how much public subsidy this private company will receive – directly and indirectly – from the public purse so it can make a private profit.

‘The truth is this government – and the train operating companies – try to blur the truth at every turn. They talk about risk and reward but there is no risk, only reward. The private companies reap their profits by overcharging passengers and by getting public investment from the hard-pressed taxpayer.’

West Midlands Trains, a joint venture between Abellio, the East Japan Railway Company and Mitsui, will take over the franchise from London Midland, the current operator, in December. London Midland is owned by Govia, which also owns embattled Southern Rail.

Government must intervene on fares

15 August 2017

Commenting on the July RPI announcement which will see fares rise by 3.6% from January 2018 ASLEF General Secretary Mick Whelan said ‘The fares system is broken and needs to be reformed. The government must intervene to make fares simpler, fairer and cheaper in Brexit Britain. At the very least,...

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Scottish Transport Minister must act to end violence

11 August 2017

ASLEF, the train drivers’ union, has called on Scottish Transport Minister Humza Yousaf to act to end the violence and anti-social behaviour plaguing passengers and staff on trains and stations. The union has warned that members are ready to refuse to work these services unless something is done. Kevin Lindsay,...

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John Davies funeral

04 August 2017

The funeral of former EC member John Davies, who died on 29 July, will take place at 14.45 on Tuesday 22 August at Eltham crematorium, Crown Woods Way, London, SE9 2AZ. There will be transport after the service to Hither Green Club and station.

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ASLEF welcomes Labour pledge on electrification

02 August 2017

Mick Whelan, general secretary of ASLEF, the train drivers' union, today welcomed Labour's pledge about modernising Britain's railways after Theresa May’s Conservative government abandoned plans to modernise Britain’s railway system – the much-needed and long-promised electrification of this country’s busy main lines. The Tories announced they were halting plans to...

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RIP John Davies, former EC member No1

01 August 2017

We are sad to report that we have just heard of the death of Honorary ASLEF member John Davies.  John was formerly a member of Hither Green branch.  He was active at branch, LDC and Sectional Council level and was a former Executive Committee Member for District No. 1. 

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