Avanti West Coast is urging customers to only travel on Saturday, June 25, if it is absolutely necessary. 

The west coast operator is expected to only run around a third of its normal Saturday timetable, as part of the industry’s response to coordinated industrial action by the RMT union across train operators and Network Rail.

Customers who do need to travel during industrial action are advised to plan ahead, make a reservation and check the Avanti West Coast website for details of the train times.

Passengers should pay particular attention to the times of the last services, as these will be much earlier than normal. Services on Sunday will also be impacted.

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Managing Director of Avanti West Coast, Phil Whittingham, said: "Weekends have seen very strong growth in passenger numbers over recent months and we’re concerned that many who travel at weekends will be less frequent rail users and may not realise the huge impact industrial action will have.

"We’ll be running a significantly reduced timetable on Saturday as result of the strike. There will be fully-trained staff onboard and at stations across our network but our trains may be very busy, and destinations will be served less frequently, if at all.

"The first trains will leave later in the day and the last train to destinations will set off much earlier than normal. The reduced timetable will also have a significant impact on Sunday.

"We’re strongly advising customers to only travel if absolutely necessary and instead make their journeys on alternative days or claim a full refund. If customers have no choice but to travel they should check our website for the latest updates, and to double-check their journey times, before setting off."

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Phil James, Network Rail’s North West route director, said: "We’ve been working hard all week negotiating with the RMT union and it’s hugely disappointing our two sides have not been able to reach a compromise, leading to a third, damaging day of strike action which will now impact weekend rail travel.

"I’m hugely sorry that people’s family and leisure time will be disrupted, and for those who will once again struggle getting to work."