Two days of industrial action by RMT union staff left very few train services running in Wales this week. Major train stations including Swansea, Bridgend, Carmarthen, Llanelli, Aberystwyth, Holyhead, and Llandudno had no services at all. Read here how it unfolded
The dispute about pay and modernisation, with the union claiming Network Rail wants to cut up to 2,500 jobs as part of a £2bn reduction in spending with workers who maintain tracks, signals and overhead lines affected. Here is what our readers said in their letters…
Rail workers’ struggle paves way for us all
The railway workers are representing us all in their struggle for decent pay, conditions and jobs.
They must win their struggle and show the way for all workers to achieve pay rises that keep up with the high rate of inflation. If they fail, we all fail and we will all become poorer and poorer.
The consequences of defeat would be far worse than some small amount of inconvenience caused by the strike.
Bob Davies, Pontypridd
UK is on a path to self-destruction
For those of us of a certain age, the present malaise our country finds itself in is all too familiar and takes us back to the pre-Thatcher era when our country was brought to its knees by the constant populist demands of the striking masses, with the inevitable result of pricing ourselves out of world markets, driving production abroad and killing of most of our heavy industry.
What short memories we have, with our “buy today, pay tomorrow” mentality. We have morphed into a nation, irrespective of circumstances, hell-bent on self-destruction, with the inevitable result of driving what is left of our manufacturing base to foreign parts.
We must brace ourselves – the party of indulgence and entitlement is over, and we must face the realities of life instead of being derailed by a load of nonsensical wokeism.
Charles Jones, Chester
Union militants set on sinking rail industry
Although it must be hard to believe for today’s younger generation, as we were recovering in the 1950s from the Second World War, the UK actually had more aircraft and car manufacturers than even the US.
Yet as a result of the militant union members taking over our industries during the1970s they handed over commercial aircraft design, development and final assembly to the French, ship building to South Korea, and the car industry to the Far East and those across the Channel.
Now the descendants of those militant union members, who seem also allergic to any form of improved efficiency and productivity, seem determined to put the last nail in the coffin of our rail industry.
The RMT’s Mick Lynch claims his mission is to protect the working class, but as happened in the 1970s, it certainly isn’t the worker in this country.
Brian Christley, Abergele
Americans show how to run a train service
Even the United States saw the folly of fully privatised railways. Amtrak, which covers a large part of the US railway system, is a state-owned enterprise, a subsidised public service (remember them?).
Having travelled by Amtrak on several occasions I found the service to be comfortable, cheap and reliable. Sadly, here in this “septic isle” the word public has been replaced with private, which invariably has the word profit nailed on.
James Barry, Cardiff