WIRRAL commuters will face disruption on Merseyrail next weekend as a fresh wave of strike action begins in an ongoing dispute over driver-only trains.

Members of The Rail, Maritime and Transport Union (RMT) will walk out for 24 hours on Saturday, August 24

The action is part of six strikes taking place on the following dates:

  • Saturday, August 24
  • Tuesday, September 3
  • Thursday, September 5
  • Monday, September 30
  • Wednesday, October 2
  • Friday, October 4‎

A limited service will call at selected stations across the network between approximately 7am and 7pm, with a short break in service in the middle of the day.

All trains will run with six carriages.

There will be no services on Merseyrail's Kirkby and Hunts Cross lines and services will start and terminate at Hooton station on the Chester and Ellesmere Port lines.

Passengers with a valid season ticket will be able to use selected bus routes in the City Region, details of which can be found at merseyrail.org/strike or by speaking to a member of staff at Merseyrail ticket offices.

Passengers travelling between Chester and Liverpool with a valid ticket can use the Transport for Wales service.

The row between RMT and Merseyrail relates to a new fleet of driver-only trains that will replace the current 40-year-old rolling stock in 2020 which the RMT say will threaten the security of guards jobs on trains.

Merseyrail and RMT had being undergoing negotiations with ACAS in which the rail operator believed that they had reached an agreement with RMT but it was rejected by the London-based national executive committee.

RMT General Secretary, Mick Cash said: "After 15 months of difficult negotiations with Merseyrail at ACAS we have reached a point where our members feel so strongly that the proposed method of dispatch for the new trains is a less safe option that they are prepared to go back to the picket lines and demand an operational role that applies to all Merseyrail stations that the new trains call at.

"Crucially the train drivers take the same view that the Guard should be responsible for the safe dispatch of the train as they are now.

"It is these very guards and drivers that operate the trains day in and day out and if they are saying that they can't accept the proposed method of operation then they must be listened to."

Managing Director of Merseyrail, Andy Heath, said: "It's extremely disappointing that our customers have to suffer further strike action on the Merseyrail network.

"We have met the demands of the RMT twice and on both occasions they have moved the goalposts.

"We have met the aspirations of the RMT and our customers, who were clear that they wanted a second person on all trains and we had two jointly established deals to guarantee that.

"We are running the best possible service that we can on the upcoming strike day and I would like to apologise to all of our customers who will be affected.

"Our monthly and annual season ticket holders will be compensated for a day of travel for each strike day given the effect that the disruption may have on their journeys.

"We will be writing to them in due course.”

Customers will find information online at


from today and can pick up a leaflet from stations on the Merseyrail network from Monday (August 19).