Network Rail: Funding and Reliability - Question

Part of the debate – in the House of Lords at 3:34 pm on 26 April 2023.

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Photo of Baroness Vere of Norbiton Baroness Vere of Norbiton Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Transport) 3:34, 26 April 2023

My noble friend is absolutely right. Sometimes it saddens me greatly how some of the unions are potentially undermining the long-term future of our rail sector. ASLEF train drivers withdrew, without warning, their rest-day working agreement. I now understand that a new rest-day working agreement was agreed, which would have vastly improved services on the TransPennine Express. However, within 24 hours, ASLEF then withdrew again on an entirely unconnected matter. Once again, we are left without rest-day working. There is a very easy way to improve services, which is to encourage the unions to reach an agreement with the TOCs, particularly on rest-day working.