Edinburgh, Fife & East Scotland

Edinburgh bus driver strike: Fresh talks taking place

Lothian buses

Fresh talks are taking place in an attempt to avert an indefinite bus strike due to start in Edinburgh later this week.

Drivers and engineers from Lothian Buses are to walk out on Friday after rejecting a last-minute deal in a long-running dispute with management.

The Unite union said its officials had met representatives of Edinburgh Council, which owns the bus company.

Further talks with management will take place later on Monday.

Asked if there had been any movement from the company, Unite regional officer Lyn Turner said: "Yes. We are working through that and that's all I can really say at the moment.

"Unite have held discussions with all the major stakeholders and we're hopeful we will have something to announce in due course."

Bullying concerns

The strike has been planned to coincide with the first day of the Edinburgh Festival and Fringe.

The Unite union had recommended that its 1,700 members at Lothian Buses accept a new deal following talks.

The proposal, which came amid a long-running dispute, included a 2.7% pay rise and new measures to address concerns over bullying.

This included bringing in external experts to assist management and the workforce.

A spokeswoman for Lothian Buses said: "We are continuing to have a positive dialogue with the union and we're hoping for a resolution."

Lesley Macinnes, City of Edinburgh Council's transport and environment convener, said: "We are extremely disappointed that industrial action remains on the table.

"The prospect of disruption to the bus service at the busiest time of the year is understandably being met with nervousness and concern right across the city.

"We are doing all that we can to avert this and are in discussions with both parties with a view to finding a resolution as soon as possible."

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