Dorset

First Dorset bus drivers announce four more strike days

Strike
Image caption Drivers manned a picket line at the entrance to the First Dorset office in Weymouth

Dorset bus drivers will stage a further four-day walkout next week, the Unite union has announced.

More than 110 First Dorset drivers, based in Weymouth and Bridport, are already in the middle of a five-day strike over pay.

Now Unite has said four more days of action will start on 27 June and accused the bus operator of "broken promises".

First Group has described the move as "totally unnecessary".

The drivers started their current walkout at 04:00 BST on Monday and will not return to work until the early hours of Saturday.

Unite said its members were angry at a 2.3% pay offer from First Group, while drivers for the firm in Bristol had been given a 13% increase.

Emergency timetable

Unite regional officer Bob Lanning said: "Twice in the past 10 days the management have said that they would come to the table with an improved offer - and on both occasions they have not budged."

But Marc Reddy, managing director of First Dorset, said: "We've tabled a number of different offers over the past few months, all of which we consider to be fair and reasonable.

"It's deeply unfortunate and frustrating that the union is taking this action, especially since our offers come on the back of pay increases in 2013 and 2014.

"We remain committed to resolving the dispute as soon as possible."

Services are running on an emergency timetable during the action.

Image copyright First Group
Image caption The operator published an emergency timetable ahead of strike action

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