South Western Railway (SWR) is urging customers only to travel by rail if absolutely necessary from Saturday 5 to Thursday 10 November due to the planned RMT industrial action. Latest information and details of which services are running can be found here.
This includes a strike day for Guy Fawkes Night on Saturday 5 November, when last trains will depart at around 1700 and customers risk getting stranded if they do not have other means of getting home.
SWR has published its strike day service levels for Saturday 5 November, Monday 7 November, and Wednesday 9 November, which will provide a severely reduced service on the routes Network Rail has made available.
Significant parts of the network will be closed entirely and those trains that are running will be far less frequent and much busier compared to normal.
Due to the impact of the strike days, customers are also urged only to travel if absolutely necessary on Sunday 6 November, Tuesday 8 November, and Thursday 10 November, when first trains will start much later than usual across the network and are likely to be very busy.
SWR’s reduced timetable will run from 07:15 to 18:30 on Saturday 5 November, Monday 7 November, and Wednesday 9 November and will consist of:
- Four trains per hour in each direction between London Waterloo and Windsor & Eton Riverside
- Two semi-fast trains per hour in each direction between London Waterloo and Basingstoke
- Four trains per hour in each direction between London Waterloo and Woking
- Two fast trains per hour in each direction between London Waterloo and Southampton Central
Trains will not stop at all the stations on these routes. There will be no SWR services across the rest of the network.
During this period the Island line will run a standard daytime timetable where possible, but services may be affected by strike action on the mainland. The Island Line will be suspended from 1900 to 0700 overnight on Monday 7 November to Tuesday 8 November.
NEW: RAIL REPLACEMENT BUS SERVICES ON SUNDAY 6 NOVEMBER
A series of long-planned engineering works to improve the railway are due to take place on Sunday 6 November. Please see www.southwesternrailway.com/nov-engineering for full details.
SWR apologises that, due to a nationwide shortage of bus drivers, rail replacement bus services will be much less frequent than originally planned for some routes with engineering works on the South Coast and in the West of England on Sunday 6 November.
Stopping rail replacement bus services between Poole and Southampton will only be running between Poole and New Milton on Sunday. Passengers will need to change bus at New Milton for onward journeys. This is likely to increase journey times by about half an hour. Sway will be served by a minibus connecting into and out of services at New Milton.
There will also be a very irregular rail replacement bus service between Exeter and Axminster on Sunday, with long gaps between buses of up to four hours. First buses will be much later than planned and last buses will be much earlier than planned. Customers are urged to carefully consider how necessary their journey is and allow extra time for their journeys.
Routes have been designed to try and ensure that stations along the routes have at least some service on Sunday, but the nationwide shortage of bus drivers means that SWR is limited in the service that can be provided despite best efforts.
South Western Railway’s Performance and Planning Director, Steve Tyler, said:
“I’m sorry that due to strike action we must urge our customers to only travel by rail if absolutely necessary from Saturday 5 to Thursday 10 November.
“Large parts of our network will be closed on strike days and there will be a late start up on the morning after. Those who must travel are urged to carefully check the times of first and last trains and avoid them if possible.
“We appreciate that customers will be eager to enjoy the fireworks for Guy Fawkes Night, but last trains for the day will depart early at around 1700 and will be very busy. Please check train times carefully to avoid getting stranded as the network will be shut for the rest of the evening.
“We are grateful to our customers for their continued cooperation, patience, and understanding as the rail industry works to bring this damaging nationwide strike action to an end.”