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Pensioners make their views known.

Pensioners make their views known.

‘Putting the public back into transport’

Against the backdrop of the continuing disruption to rail travel due to the industrial dispute affecting Southern, trades unions have organised Big Up Transport (BUT) Day on Sunday 23 April to publicise such matters and consider how we can achieve better public transport. Nick Terdre reports.

Public transport has been in the news over the past year, with train strikes affecting many travellers. As the dispute drags on, Big Up Transport Day has been organised by transport unions and Hastings and District Trades Union Council to raise awareness about issues behind the headlines. It will be held on Sunday 23 April.

It will also offer members of the public opportunities to meet transport workers and exchange ideas about how we can press for better public transport.

From a previous demonstration against Southern.

From a previous demonstration against Southern.

Walk around town

The day gets under way at 12.30pm when people are asked to gather in the Wetherspoons Pub in Havelock Road. Once assembled, the gathering will move to the railway/bus station from which it will depart at 1.30pm on a walk around town, distributing leaflets to passers-by and talking to them about the issues.

One of the slogans for the day is: “Putting the Public Back into Transport,” Ian Stewart, one of the event’s organisers, tells HOT.

The walk will call at the TU tree in Cornwallis Gardens, planted in memory of those killed in work accidents and to call attention to the need to ensure safety at work,

Central Hall rally

The public will also be invited to a rally due to begin at 3pm in the Central Hall in Station Road (between the 1066 Bakery and The Clarence pub). The rally will be addressed by Steve Hedley, assistant general secretary of the Rail, Maritime and Transport Workers Union (RMT), one of the unions involved in the Southern dispute, and Dot Gibson, deputy general secretary of the National Pensioners’ Convention, who has often called attention to the need to retain guards on trains to assist the elderly.

but day 3There will also be speakers from groups campaigning for the rights of disabled people, including Paula Peters, an activist on behalf of wheelchair users, for whom travel on public transport, as for others with disabilities, is often problematic. Representatives of commuter groups will also address the rally.

For more information call Ian Stewart on 07801 358090 or write to

See also Day of action to build public support for safe walking and cycling routes.

Posted 09:54 Friday, Apr 21, 2017 In: Campaigns

1 Comment

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  1. DAR

    I hold no brief for the trade unions involved, but I must say this dispute seems to be about profit and greed on the part of Southern Rail’s management, directors & shareholders. Why not conductors? Why MUST the trains be “driver-only operated” doors> Answer: see the above.

    Comment by DAR — Thursday, Apr 27, 2017 @ 11:44

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