Metrolink strikes suspended ahead of Parklife festival

Metrolink staff have called of this weekend’s strikes after receiving an improved pay offer.

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Metrolink staff have suspended strikes that were planned for this weekend and would have disrupted travel to several big events across the city, including Parklife festival, the charity Soccer Aid match at Old Trafford and The Courteeners, The Weekend and Roger Waters gigs.

Unite, the union that represents Metrolink workers, said that they have received an improved pay offer following talks with Greater Manchester mayor Andy Burnham. Unite’s 600 members will now ballot the revised offer.

If Unite members reject the offer, new strike dates will be announced.

Unite regional officer Colin Hayden said: “Unite made it clear from the outset that Metrolink was fully able to make an improved offer and as a result of the intervention of the mayor that has now occurred. Our members will now be balloted on the offer and they will decide if its meets their expectations.”

The last of the 27 new Metrolink trams at the Queen's Road depotThe last of the 27 new Metrolink trams at the Queen's Road depot
The last of the 27 new Metrolink trams at the Queen's Road depot

Mayor Andy Burnham said in a statement posed on Twitter: “Last week I made an offer to intervene and facilitate a dialogue between Metrolink operator KeolisAmey and representatives of Unite in an effort to advance talks and avert industrial action this weekend.

“We’ve worked hard with colleagues at Transport for Greater Manchester to bring the two sides together, and I want to thank the teams at KeolisAmey and Unite for engaging positively and constructively in these talks.

“I’m very pleased that an agreement has now been reached to suspend strike action and put a new and improved offer on the table, keeping our tram network running another really important weekend for the city-region.”