What is SWR doing to protect commuters from its dispute with RMT? After just moving to Hampshire from south London, where my family endured two years of misery on the Southern network, this is extremely worrying news.
I too am extremely concerned about this. We cannot end up in a southern rail style dispute where the astronomical cost is passed onto the rail users in terms of losing jobs, all spare time with your family etc and not even being able to move because the value of your home has been destroyed. Just let them win and keep the blumin extra conductor. I think its fair enough to have a member on staff at hand on a huge train and not as ridiculous as some of the other union tube disputes.
I think guards on trains play a vital role in terms of passenger safety, revenue protection and being a source of information for the customers. SWR should reassure both the RMT and the passengers that the guards will remain on the trains! We cannot endure endless strikes in addition to everything else.
A good opportunity for SWR to gain good PR at the start of the franchise by averting these possible strikes!
I find almost all of the Guards do an excellent job on SWR on our line (Portsmouth Direct). It's important to have that role on the train and the public understand exactly what the role of the Guard is. Removing that role is not good for passengers and watering down that role and giving it another ambiguous name like Train Manager, Conductor, Customer Service Assistant etc is confusing for passengers. I am very happy with a fully trained, professional person with important saftey responsibilities, in charge of the train and passengers, which allows the driver to focus on their safety responsibilities.
Learn the lesson from Southern, SWR!
I agree that guards on trains play a vital role for passenger safety. South Western Railway urgently need to provide passengers with some reassurance and clarity.
I agree that guards play a vital role in SWR delivering an efficient and safe service, but it’s crucial that we don’t suffer for a dispute that isn’t our making. We already pay sickening (and ever-increasing) prices to use the service – without the option to use an alternative one – and the service for many is paid in advance via season tickets. This puts us in a very vulnerable position because we have no effective means of expressing our discontent, and of course RMT and SWR are fully aware of this.