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Summary

  1. Southern rail conductors staged 24-hour strike
  2. Company says the action had "significant effect" on services
  3. RMT union accused operator of refusing to take part in talks
  4. Govia Thameslink said it was open to talks

Live Reporting

By Bob Dale and Clark Ainsworth

All times stated are UK

Get involved

Our live coverage from across the day

Clark Ainsworth

BBC News

That's it from the BBC South East team on the Southern rail strike.

Thank you for following our updates throughout the day and for all your comments and tweets.

Southern: 'Some routes to finish early'

Southern says some services will finish early tonight because of the industrial action and is advising passengers to check their route before they travel.

You can get the latest information on the operator's live journey planner page.

Southern rail train
Southern

'Train more punctual than usual today'

Commuters have been having their say on Twitter about today's strike.

Train more punctual than usual today (only 1min late!). Conductors making themselves look very dispensable. #southernstrike

With Southern trains delayed/cancelled and packed every day, I wonder whether anyone will notice today's strike #southernstrike

Keep The Guard On The Train! Always think safety first. @SouthernRailUK #southernstrike @RMTunion

The entirety of the workforce of southern England is currently psyching itself up for the commute home... #NoMercy #southernstrike

Restrictions on bicycles 'to allow more passengers'

.Non folding bicycles will not be permitted on our trains today to allow us to carry as many passengers as possible

Hundreds of trains cancelled by strike action

Hundreds of trains have been cancelled on one of the busiest routes in the UK, causing travel chaos for passengers.

Three Bridges railway station
BBC

The walkout by RMT union conductors started just after midnight and is part of a dispute over the role of guards.

Govia Thameslink says the action is "totally unnecessary".

Govia Thameslink: 'Unfounded claims behind union action'

More from rail operator boss Charles Horton who has accused the RMT union of carrying out a campaign of "scaremongering and misleading claims".

Charles Horton
BBC

The rail chief said the union had claimed the firm was removing guards from trains, placing safety under threat and putting profit before safety.

Mr Horton said under the plans there would be the same number of people on trains as there are today. He said all three claims were completely unfounded and untrue.

Passengers: 'It seems to be happening so often now'

Passengers arriving at Brighton Station give us their views.

Southern commuters at Brighton Station

Getting ready for the journey back home?

Rail operator Southern has urged passengers to check before they travel this evening and allow plenty of time to complete journeys, because some services will close down early.

You can get the latest travel updates through the BBC.

RMT: 'We had no choice but to strike'

Paul Cox from the RMT says the union is not prepared to sacrifice the conductors' safety role.

Paul Cox from the RMT

Compensation offer follows disruption

For those passengers who have suffered disruption, Southern posted the following information on Twitter about compensation claims.

Details of compensation for the RMT strike can be found here > ow.ly/3rMu300k4Er

Details of compensation for the RMT strike can be found here > ow.ly/3rMu300k4Er

'German efficiency and fear of being late'

Thanks to inherent German efficiency and fear of being late I managed to arrive at auditions an hour early despite #SouthernIndustrialAction

Southern: 'We're very sorry for the disruption'

Dyan Crowther, chief operating officer of Govia Thameslink Railway, which runs Southern, thinks it's an "unnecessary strike".

Dyan Crowther from Govia Thameslink

Tell us about your journeys home

Tanya Gupta

That's all from me on Southern rail strike. 

I'm handing over to Bob Dale who will be following the latest on the industrial action and looking ahead to the evening rush hour. 

We want to hear about your journeys home. Get in touch and let us know how you get on. You can tweet us using #Southernstrikeemail us or leave a message on our Facebook page.  

Campaign to 'keep guards on trains'

 Action for Rail - a campaign by rail unions and the TUC - urges passengers to contact their MPs about the planned Southern changes.

Keep guards on trains, ask your MP to call for a safe, properly staffed railway! bit.ly/1TaHaok

Keep guards on trains, ask your MP to call for a safe, properly staffed railway! bit.ly/1TaHaok

TSSA union: 'Dispute could spread'

Transport union TSSA has warned the dispute could spread to involve ticket office staff facing job losses with the closure or partial closures of over 80 offices.

Union leader Manuel Cortes said public support for keeping the offices open had been "ignored by Southern". He said: "We could very soon find ourselves in dispute."

'Skeleton service'

And some light-hearted comments are circulating on Twitter amid the industrial action.

At #southernrail we apologise that owing to the strike we will be running a skeleton service only today

At #southernrail we apologise that owing to the strike we will be running a skeleton service only today

Southern: 'Check trains ahead of evening rush hour'

Advice from Southern here for passengers who need to make return journeys later today.

Please check you returning trains today as many routes will be finishing much earlier ojp.nationalrail.co.uk

Please check you returning trains today as many routes will be finishing much earlier ojp.nationalrail.co.uk

Govia Thameslink: 'Reduced service operating well'

The rail operator's chief executive Charles Horton says Southern is "operating well" with a reduced service on strike day.

But he said: "This pointless and unnecessary action by the RMT causes enormous disruption for the 300,000 people we carry on their commute every day."

He said rail workers being led astray and misled by trade unions acting in "their own narrow, selfish interests".

'Safety implications of earlier GWR fire'

More from the RMT union on the safety implications of the earlier fire on a Great Western Railway service.

The union's general secretary Mick Cash said: "We do know from now-deleted Network Rail tweets that the fire was put out under the direction of the guard who also safely evacuated passengers on this busy service."

Latest updates coming on BBC South East Today

TV reporter Leanne Rinne has spent the morning at Three Bridges station following updates on the strike action, train delays and cancellations.

She will give the latest on what has become an increasingly bitter stand-off at 13:30 BST on BBC1.

Leanne Rinne
BBC

'No meaningful discussion..."

BBC London's transport correspondent Tom Edwards says commuters will be concerned by the Southern strike.

Tom Edwards from BBC London

Southern has extra staff on hand to help

Strike ballot in Scotland over driver-only trains

Rail guards in Scotland are to be balloted on strikes in a dispute over driver-only operation of trains, according to the Press Association's industrial correspondent Alan Jones.

'No need for queues at Three Bridges'

More from BBC reporter Mitch Mansfield here on a quieter station than expected.

View more on twitter

'Chock-full train sent to smallest platform'

Commuter Lee Vousden says a crowded train was sent to Victoria's smallest platform - but BBC reporter Mitch Mansfield finds Southern did not have the queues it was braced for.

View more on twitter
View more on twitter

'Fire shows importance of guards' safety role'

There's more from BBC correspondent Tom Edwards on an incident dealt with by South West Trains earlier.

View more on twitter

Rail strike protest outside London Victoria

BBC London's transport correspondent Tom Edwards is covering the strike from Victoria station.

View more on twitter

BBC South East rail strike updates - send us your stories

Tanya Gupta

Good morning. I'm taking over from Claire to bring you updates on the Southern rail strike as it happens.

If you'd like to get in touch and let us know about your journeys around the South East you can tweet us using #Southernstrike, email us or leave a message on our Facebook page.

'Many commuters have stayed at home'

It's been a quiet morning at Three Bridges station according to BBC South East reporter Leanne Rinne.

Leanne Rinne at Three Bridges station

'I think the next thing on the cards is going to be restructuring'

Dr Alf Crossman, Industrial Relations Expert from the University of Sussex, with his views on the strike action.

Alf Crossman on Southern strike action

'Might as well stay in bed'

Fred Pratley on Twitter outlined his plans for today...

View more on twitter

RMT union protest

Workers have been at Brighton station this morning.

RMT union protest in Brighton

Businesswoman's anger over disruption

Passengers at Three Bridges station have their say

Get in touch if you've been affected by the strike using #Southernstrike.

Rail strike passengers speak of frustration

PA Industrial Correspondent speaks to BBC Surrey

This is properly deadlocked and the rhetoric is getting angrier by the day. Southern has an awful lot of trains not running. There only has to be a minor incident or delay and it causes a lot of disruption. It is going to be proper chaos today across the network.

Alan JonesPA Industrial Correspondent

Southern rail facts and figures

Here are some facts and figures about the train operator.  

Southern facts and figures
BBC
Southern facts and figures

RMT claims of 'threats and intimidation'

The union claimed rail operator Govia Thameslink tried to intimidate staff in what became an increasingly bitter row.

Graphic
BBC