Gov 'losing control' over rail strikes

By Rebecca Weller

- Last updated on GMT

Critical impact: Government has "lost control" over strike action (Credit: Getty/Cultura/Monty Rakusen)
Critical impact: Government has "lost control" over strike action (Credit: Getty/Cultura/Monty Rakusen)

Related tags Finance Government NTIA

The Government has “lost control” of “escalating” strike action as the hospitality sector continues to be “critically impacted”, the Night-Time Industries Association (NTIA) has stated.

According to the association, ongoing rail strikes have been estimated to result in a loss of £2bn worth of “vital revenue” that would have helped businesses survive the early part of next year

NTIA CEO Michael Kill said: “Its abundantly clear the Government has lost control, strike​ action has overshadowed the first Christmas ​period we have had to celebrate with some normality in over 3 years.”

Downturn in trade 

This comes as the National Union of Rail, Maritime and Transport Workers (RMT) last month announced a series of 48 -hour strikes​ would take place across December and January, as well as an overtime ban, amid ongoing negotiations regarding pay disputes and working conditions for rail workers.

On top of rail strikes, yesterday (Monday 12 December) saw weather warnings for snow​, ice and fog across much of the UK cause further disruption to travel, resulting in additional cancellations for some operators. 

Kill added: “Businesses are already seeing a 30% downturn in trade due to transport challenges and changing weather, with festive ​bookings being cancelled ​daily and party sizes reducing as we move into the heart of the festive period.”

Critical impact 

Moreover, trade body UKHospitality recently estimated continuing rail strikes had already cost the sector £1.5bn​ in lost sales​ with chief executive Kate Nicholls urging those involved in negotiations to reach a solution​ “imminently” to avoid further “harmful” strike action.  

Kill said: “The Government cannot ignore the escalating situation any longer. As more unions join the UK wide industrial action bringing the country closer to a standstill.

“The current circumstances are critically impacting​ businesses and will require a Government intervention and further support for businesses at the sharpest end of this crisis​.”

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