Threat of new Leeds bus strikes averted as drivers accept pay deal

A picket line at First's Hunslet depot during one of this summer's strikes.
A picket line at First's Hunslet depot during one of this summer's strikes.
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Bus firm First Leeds has reached a deal with its drivers in their long-running dispute over pay.

Around 1,000 drivers at First staged three 24-hour strikes earlier this summer, causing widespread disruption to services.

Today, however, First and the Unite union issued a joint statement confirming that the drivers had voted to accept a revised pay offer, ending the threat of further walkouts.

The vote followed “positive discussions” between the company and the union, said the statement.

First Leeds managing director Paul Matthews said: “I’m very pleased that our Leeds drivers have accepted the pay offer that recognises the hard work they do and is also affordable to the business.

“This is great news for our customers and our staff and enables us all to focus on the important work of further improving services for our customers.”

Unite’s Phil Bown said: “We’ve worked together to put in place a pay agreement that has been accepted by our members.

“This brings an end to the dispute and any further industrial action.”

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