News

Here you will find the latest ASLEF news articles. Archived articles can be found in the News Archive section in the left hand navigation bar.

You can also find recent issues of the ASLEF Journal and other ASLEF publications in the Publications section.  

London Underground drivers vote to strike
28 Jan 2015In a ballot which closed today, London Underground drivers were asked whether they would be prepared to take part in a strike over concerns at a lack of safety at the entrance to Parsons Green sidings. Drivers voted overwhelmingly in support of strike action (76.5% Yes).
Policing the railway in Scotland
23 Jan 2015The British Transport Police, under the Railways and Transport Safety Act 2003, are responsible for railway policing throughout Great Britain. Proposals by the Smith Commission ‘will devolve legislative competence in relation to railway policing in Scotland.’
Rail franchising in Scotland
23 Jan 2015ASLEF, the train drivers’ union, has welcomed proposals on the railways in Scotland in the Smith Commission report – even though they don’t go far enough. Kevin Lindsay, ASLEF’s organiser in Scotland, says: ‘The power will be devolved to the Scottish government to allow public sector operators to bid for rail franchises funded and specified by Scottish ministers. We welcome that initiative because, currently, public sector operators are precluded from bidding and operating rail franchises in Britain. The new clause will lift this existing prohibition with regards to passenger rail services that start and end in Scotland and certain cross border services where Scottish ministers are the “appropriate franchising authority.” But these proposals are just the start, not the end, of the journey. Because everyone knows – everyone who uses and works on the railways in Britain – that privatisation has failed. That’s why we believe in an integrated railway system, fit for the 21st century, in public ownership.’
Trains should be assets not commodities
21 Jan 2015It was revealed yesterday that Eversholt Rail, one of the three rolling stock companies which owns around 28% of the UK’s fleet of passenger trains has been sold to a Hong Kong based company CK Investments for £2.5 billion. CK Investments currently controls Northumbrian Water and mobile phone network Three. 3i Infrastructure who currently own Eversholt Rail along with investors Morgan Stanley and STAR Capital stand to make around £358 million from the deal.
ASLEF District 5 Political Meeting
20 Jan 2015ASLEF’s District 5 Political Meeting takes place at 12h30 on Sunday 25 January at Hornchurch Railway Club. Speakers include Mick Whelan, general secretary, and Polly Billington, PPC Thurrock. All welcome.
No long term plan for rail because of privatisation says Union
16 Jan 2015The House of Commons Public Accounts Committee today published a report into ‘Lessons learned from major rail infrastructure programmes’ which examines overall management of rail upgrades such as the modernisation of the West Coast Main Line and the construction of the Channel Tunnel Rail Link, Crossrail, Thameslink and the planned HS2. The report concludes that the Department for Transport does not have a clear strategic plan for the rail industry.
Train companies living in wonderland
14 Jan 2015Southern’s 7.29 from Brighton to London Victoria, where it is due to arrive at 8.35, has been dubbed the ‘Train of Shame’ after being late every day last year. But that is only half the story.
ASLEF on Network Rail's report on overrun
13 Jan 2015Network Rail says the Christmas overrun at King's Cross was caused by 'a multiplying catalogue of errors' worsened by 'mutual failings' of communication between Network Rail and Govia Thameslink Railway which manages nearby Finsbury Park station, used an emergency alternative but which became overwhelmed and had to be closed for a while during the day. Network Rail chief executive Mark Carne said: 'A number of things went wrong. In addition it is clear that our project back-up plans and the train service plans should have done a much better job in protecting the travelling public from our engineering problems.'
Unions announce launch of manifesto for change
13 Jan 2015ASLEF and Labour’s 14 affiliated unions which represent 3 million workers announced the launch of their election manifesto for change this week. The five point pledge card include calls on Labour to commit to decent wages, to increasing the minimum wage, to end exploitative zero hours contracts, to run the NHS in public hands and pledges to help with the cost of living.
Election Results
9 Jan 2015ASLEF’s new President, TOSH McDONALD (EC member District No.4) has, this week, taken over from Alan Donnelly, who stepped down from the Executive Committee in December. DAVE CALFE (EC member District No.6) is ASLEF’s new vice-President. Congratulations to both.