Monday’s bus strike in Leeds is OFF – but today’s walkout is continuing as planned

A picket line at First's Hunslet Park depot.

A picket line at First's Hunslet Park depot.

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The bus strike planned for Leeds on Monday is off, union leaders confirmed today.

Around 1,000 employees at the First operator’s Bramley and Hunslet Park depots were due to stage a walkout over pay from 4am to 10am.

But today the Unite union said it had called off Monday’s strike as a gesture of “good faith” as it tries to set up fresh peace talks with bosses at First.

Unite regional officer Phil Bown told the Yorkshire Evening Post: “We want to try to resolve this dispute rather than see the travelling public facing further inconvenience.”

Confirmation that Monday’s strike is off came during a 24-hour stoppage that will still continue until 2am tomorrow.

First says it has been running around a quarter of its usual timetable during today’s walkout.

Mr Bown said support for the strike among the union’s members remained “solid”.

Speaking earlier this week, he accused First of asking his members to accept an “insulting” pay offer.

The company says it has put a deal on the table that would provide a “substantial pay increase way above inflation”.

Elland Road park-and-ride buses are operating as normal today, as are service numbers 508 (Halifax-Leeds), 670 (Bradford-Leeds), X6 (Bradford-Leeds Express) and X11 (Bradford-Pudsey-Leeds).

First says buses on some other routes – including the number 5 (Leeds-Halton Moor), 12 (Leeds-Roundhay Park) and 51 (Moor Allerton-Leeds-Tingley Mills) – should be running every 30 minutes.

Services scheduled to operate on an hourly basis include the number 4 (Pudsey-Leeds), 16 (Leeds-Seacroft) and 50 (Horsforth-Leeds-Seacroft).

The firm’s buses in Bradford, Halifax and Huddersfield are unaffected by today’s walkout, which follows two 24-hour strikes last month.

For full details of today’s timetables, visit the www.firstgroup.com/leeds website.

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