Talks to place over National Express rail strikes at Stansted Airport

TALKS between union members and rail chiefs are set to take place tomorrow (Tuesday) in a bid to avoid further strikes on National Express East Anglia train services. Members of the Rail Maritime and Transport (RMT) and Aslef unions walked out last Thursd

TALKS between union members and rail chiefs are set to take place tomorrow (Tuesday) in a bid to avoid further strikes on National Express East Anglia train services.

Members of the Rail Maritime and Transport (RMT) and Aslef unions walked out last Thursday for 48 hours causing disruption to services from Stansted Airport.

Another two-day strike is planned for this Thursday but the RMT confirmed that talks with the rail company would take place beforehand.

However, both parties are still understood to be far apart in their negotiations over improved pay and working conditions.

RMT general secretary Bob Crow said the strike had been caused by National Express bosses being "greedy".

He said: "The strikes on National Express East Anglia come down to one simple fact - this is a greedy company, pumped full of public subsidies who now expect their staff to take a hit on their pay and working conditions while the top bosses fatten up their profits at the expense of the travelling public and the workforce."

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National Express East Anglia managing director, Andrew Chivers, said: "The unions' demands are totally unrealistic, especially in this current economic climate.

"We have offered salary increases above the rate of inflation, and remain available at any time for discussions to reach a sensible, affordable and fair agreement.

"Strike action is unnecessary and simply not the solution.

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