Greater Anglia will only run main line trains on strike days

Greater Anglia Intercity

There will only be a limited service on the main line on strike days if the action goes ahead next week. - Credit: Greater Anglia/Nick Strugnell

No passenger trains are expected to run in East Anglia away from the main lines to London during next week's three days of strike action by the Rail Maritime and Transport union.

The RMT has called one-day strikes for Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday as part of a dispute it has with train operators across the country and Network Rail over pay and job security.

Greater Anglia, along with all other train operators in the country, is expected to announce details of its services on strike days on Wednesday, but it has already warned that train travel will be extremely difficult or impossible on strike days.

On those days the only services running will be an Intercity service between Norwich, Ipswich, Colchester and London and a stopping service between Colchester and London.

And these services will be seriously reduced - there will be nothing like a regular timetable operating and services will only operate between 7.30am and 6.30pm - there will be no early morning or evening trains.

There will also be a reduced service between London and Stansted Airport and Cambridge - but again trains will only operate during the day.

Other routes, including those from Ipswich to Lowestoft or Ipswich to Cambridge will see no trains whatsoever.

The strike will see Greater Anglia staff who work on trains and stations stay away from work - along with Network Rail signal staff who control where trains are heading.

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A statement from Greater Anglia urged people to look for other ways to travel on strike days if there is not a resolution to the dispute - and also warned there could be disruption on days before and after the strikes because trains will not be in the right place.

The statement said: "We would stress that there will be very few trains running and only between the hours mentioned, so it will be very important to check the detailed timetables once they are published.

"Even where there are some services operating on strike days, the general advice will be to only travel if necessary. On the days after the strikes it is expected that services will start later than normal."

While both sides in the dispute have said they are prepared for talks, there are few signs of a breakthrough before the first of next week's strikes is due to start.