Sandy on the Beeb

Chamber Chief Executive Sandy Needham appeared on national TV yesterday to comment on the impact of the rail strike.

RMT union members in the North of England are protesting against the proposal for driver-only operated trains, following similar protests in the South for more than 12 months.  The BBC Breakfast show featured Steph McGovern speaking to union members, the public and Sandy in Leeds station at the height of what is usually rush hour.  Sandy highlighted that transport and commuter congestion remain a major concern for Yorkshire businesses but strike activity hampers the region’s economic effectiveness.

Rail unions say that the decision to put drivers in charge of operating carriage doors compromises overall safety, while train operators contest that and want the second train crew member to concentrate on taking fares and customer service.  The Chamber’s view is that the dispute is resolved as quickly as possible so that the local and regional economy can get back to business.