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A third Merseyrail strike is coming later this month

Wirral Line services to Chester and Ellesmere Port are likely to be reduced

Merseyrail(Image: Julian Hamilton/Daily Mirror)

A third strike by Merseyrail workers has been set.

The RMT union has announced its members will walk out on May 30.

Wirral Line passengers will face a day of disruption with a likely reduced level of service.

On the previous strike days, trains this side of the Mersey have terminated at Hooton instead of Chester and Ellesmere Port.

It is the latest step in the dispute over driver-only trains.

Merseyrail wants to introduce a new £460m fleet, which would operate without guards, by 2020.

RMT general secretary Mick Cash said: “It is disgraceful Merseyrail continue to refuse all reasonable attempts by the union to settle this dispute.

“Merseyrail have repeatedly kicked all conciliatory approaches by RMT negotiators back in our faces.

“They have made it crystal clear that all that they are interested in is the union signing a surrender document which gives them a free hand to rip apart the safety culture on the railway.

“It is that cynical and hostile stance from Merseyrail which has left us with no option but to put on this additional strike action.”

Up to 220 guard jobs could be at risk, but the rail company says all staff will be guaranteed employment elsewhere in the business.

After talks broke down last month, Merseyrail said they would be preparing for further strike action.

Managing director Jan Chaudhry-van der Velde said: “We are committed to bringing an end to this dispute and to ensure that we introduce our new trains in a way that works for our passengers and staff.

“We know, for example, that our passengers value a visible on-board staffing presence when travelling late at night, despite our network being one of the safest in the country.

“We at Merseyrail are trying hard to create some middle ground so that the negotiation can move forward.

“It is clear that the RMT are unwilling to move from their entrenched position.”

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