Bus drivers in north Wales vote to strike for more than a month

Bus drivers across north Wales could be on strike for five weeks in a pay dispute with Arriva Cymru.

The 95 per cent vote in favour of strike action follows a 1.77 per cent pay rise offer.

Drivers at the Wrexham depot are among those who voted to strike, continuously, from November 14 until December 19.

However the strike is not expected to hit the Oswestry to Wrexham bus service as it is operated by Arriva Midlands North.

The service links the two towns as well as the Chirk area and villages including Gobowen and Weston Rhyn.

Arriva Cymru says it believes the pay offer is fair and highly competitive.

Unite regional officer Jo Goodchild said: "Obviously, this is a huge mandate for industrial action - one of the biggest I have ever experienced. There is a window of opportunity for the management to sit down with Unite for a constructive dialogue over pay before strike action starts on 14 November – and we urge Arriva Cymru to rise to this challenge.

“The alternative is that a large part of the public transport network grinds to a halt in the run-up to Christmas.”

An Arriva UK Bus spokesperson said: "It is very regrettable to hear that Unite members in Arriva’s depots across North Wales and Chester have voted in favour of striking over rates of pay.

"While we understand concerns about recent increases to the cost of living, we believe the offer we put forward is fair and highly competitive.

"Arriva is very committed to continued dialogue and has already been involved in extensive discussions with our trade union partners. We had very much hoped to reach an agreement.

“Public transport remains under enormous pressure following the effects of the pandemic and it’s vital that we work together to build a recovery, while also providing continuity of services for local communities.”

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