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Bank holiday rail strike called off

First Great Western expects to run its full advertised timetable. Credit: Fiona Hanson/PA Archive/Press Association Images

The planned rail strike on bank holiday Monday has been cancelled after the TSSA and RMT unions received a new pay offer from Network Rail.

The industrial action has been called off pending the outcome of a meeting with Network Rail representatives next week.

Rail strike affecting bank holiday weekend

Rail workers have voted for industrial action. Credit: Fiona Hanson/PA Archive/Press Association Images

There is to be a rail strike during the bank holiday weekend - Network Rail employees in the RMT and TSSA unions have voted for industrial action in a dispute over pay, affecting services on bank holiday Monday (25 May), as well as Tuesday 26 May and the morning of Wednesday 27 May.

First Great Western say refunds are available for customers who have already bought tickets during the strike period, and those with tickets for travel on Monday and Tuesday may also be use them on Sunday Wednesday.

They hope to operate the following services in our region:

  • Paddington – Bristol Temple Meads, calling at Reading Didcot, Swindon, Chippenham, Bath and Bristol, extended to Weston-Super-Mare and Taunton during peak: Hourly
  • Swindon – Bristol, calling at Chippenham, Bath Spa, Oldfield Park, Keynsham, Bristol Temple Meads: Hourly
  • Bristol Parkway – Weston-Super-Mare, calling at Filton, Stapleton Road, Lawrence Hill, Bristol Temple Meads, Bedminster, Parson St, Nailsea and Backwell, Yatton, Worle, Weston Milton and Weston-Super-Mare: Hourly
  • Cardiff – Taunton, calling at Newport, Severn Tunnel Juncton, Patchway, Filton Abbey Wood, Bristol Temple Meads, Nailsea, Yatton, Worle, Weston-Super-Mare, Highbridge, Bridgwater and Taunton: Hourly
  • Paddington – Plymouth, calling at Reading, Bristol Parkway, Bristol Temple Meads, Taunton, Tiverton, Exeter, Dawlish, Teignmouth, Newton Abbot, Totnes, Ivybridge (select trains only) and Plymouth: Hourly

The following services will not be running in our region from 00:01 Monday 25 May, and will be in delays on the Wednesday morning:

  • Between Swindon and Gloucester/Cheltenham
  • Between Bath Spa and Portsmouth Harbour
  • Between Reading and Taunton
  • On Severn Beach branch line
  • North Cotswolds line, from Oxford and calling at Worcester and Hereford

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Easter travel disruption latest: 'Plans in place' to get you home

Train services have been disrupted over the long weekend due to engineering works. Credit: Gareth Fuller/PA Wire/Press Association Images

Rail companies say they've prepared contingency plans to make sure passengers get home if weekend engineering works overrun.

Services across the west country have been disrupted over Easter because of work taking place further up the line at Reading. Network Rail has promised to prevent a repeat of the chaos that happened over Christmas.

It's a real consideration, and we've been working closely with Network Rail to ensure that there are contingency plans in place should that happen. We'll be letting people know as soon as we know if there's a problem, but at the moment everything is running to time.

– Dan Panes, First Great Western

90 passengers evacuated from train

Train stuck in flood water in Corsham Credit: ITV West Country

A train traveling from London Paddington became stuck in floodwater at Pound Pill in Corsham in the early hours of this morning. 90 passengers were on the train, which came to a halt in a cutting where water was up to a metre deep in places.

All the passengers were rescued from the train by 0600 this morning.

The train is still blocking the track causing major disruption to rail services in the region.

Services to and from Bristol Temple Meads are unable to call at Chippenham. Trains are being diverted via an alternative route, adding around 45 minutes to journey times.

We are trying to arrange rail replacement trains and tickets will be accepted on local transport and other trains.

– First Great Western

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Bristol to get £700 million of rail improvements

Temple Meads Station, Bristol. Credit: PA

Network Rail has confirmed it has the money to pay for a £700 million pound package of improvements to train services around Bristol.

It includes station upgrades at Temple Meads and Bristol Parkway, and building extra tracks at Filton. There will be capacity for more than 3000 extra seats for passengers during the rush hour.

Taunton line to close for 3 weeks

The main railway line between Taunton and Tiverton is to be closed for three weeks in the new year for repairs.

Network Rail is to spend £15 million upgrading the line and repairing a Victorian tunnel. Replacement coach services are planned along with extra car parking.

The closure is due to start on January the 18th and will last until February the 10th.

Network Rail is to spend £15 million upgrading the line and repairing a Victorian tunnel
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