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Saturday, 20 December 2014

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Sellafield to cut bus and train perks

SELLAFIELD says it will save hundreds of thousands of pounds a year by stopping its Stagecoach contract bus service for employees.

Cut-price travel for employees to and from work by trains will also be either stopped or slashed.

Unions are protesting against the move but Sellafield Ltd says it will help save £1 million every year.

The assisted travel transport brakes is set to be applied from the end of September. It will mean the end of heavily-subsidised fares for workers travelling on a fleet of buses to Sellafield from the north of the site. The company wants to end the Stagecoach contract altogether.

It would also mean the end of a long-running contract with bus company Stagecoach (and before that the service was run for decades by the old Cumberland Motor Services).

But now Sellafield Ltd says the buses are not full enough. It wants to scrap the service along with cuts in assisted travel for workers on public trains.

Unions are in talks over the proposals and the company says the present arrangements will continue until negotiations are completed.

“It seems as though the gravy train has finally ended,” said a Sellafield insider.

Prospect union convenor Peter Clements said: “We believe the company has made this proposal with the sole intention of saving money and with complete disregard to our remonstrations and their responsibilities regarding security, environmental, logistical, socio-economic and workforce consequences.

“As a result all unions have put in a collective complaint which the company has agreed to hear prior to any changes being made.”

Yesterday Sellafield Ltd told The Whitehaven News that the assisted travel scheme had been under-used for some time and was being examined with a view to reducing some of the assistance.

The company will further encourage use of car sharing and it is understood there would be no objection to any private company wishing to run a private bus service for workers if it was commercially viable without subsidy.

Employees have been told: “As part of our on-going programme of work aimed at meeting the challenges of the current economic environment and driving sustained cost efficiency throughout the organisation the scheme has been reviewed again this year and remains under utilised.

“As a result a number of changes are proposed with a view to reducing some of the assistance provided. If implemented these changes will contribute to savings in excess of £1 million a year.”

As far as the public train service proposal is concerned the company will no longer subsidise higher wage earners in Band 4 and Band 3 employees (£28,000-£65,000 a year salary range) who will have to pay full fare; the subsidy for Band 5 (£11,000-£29,000) to reduce by 25 per cent and from March next year to be cut by 50 per cent from the current level.”

There is no public bus service to Sellafield but Barrow-Carlisle trains stop at Sellafield station leaving workers with a short walk to the site.

Sellafield Ltd says it encourages car employees to car share and cars are not allowed on site unless there is more than one occupant apart from shift and emergency workers. A park-and-ride service operates from nearby Yottenfews.

Have your say

So the bus service will go for the workers So the Compeny cars must also go for the managers more savings

Posted by JOHN on 13 July 2010 at 11:35

Any efficiency gains from job losses etc will be wiped out by the £50,000,000 pa fee paid to the American led consortium.

'Copeland MP Jamie Reed, whose constituency covers the site, has called the deal “the biggest in the history of west Cumbria”.'

It’s not to our benefit Reed, So who exactly do you represent?

Posted by Anonymous on 12 July 2010 at 21:25

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