South London bus drivers’ delight after landing 10.5 per cent pay rise

Bus workers employed by the Go-Ahead group in London have secured a pay increase in line with current inflation levels, following intensive negotiations with the company. 

The workers who will benefit operate routes throughout South London and are based depots across the region, including ones at Bexleyheath, Camberwell, Croydon, Merton, Morden Wharfe, New Cross, Peckham, Putney, Stockwell and Waterloo. 

Go-Ahead operates about a quarter of the buses plying London routes – a fleet of 2,300 buses working out of 17 depots.

The pay rises of 10.5 per cent apply to both bus drivers and engineers. 

Unite General Secretary Sharon Graham said: “This is an important win for bus workers at Go-Ahead.

“By being organised and fully prepared to face down management, they have secured this pay increase. 

 “Unite’s commitment to prioritising the jobs, pay and conditions of its members is paying dividends and the pay deal at Go-Ahead is a clear example of the success of this strategy.” 

The company initially made a ‘final offer’ of nine per cent, but this was rejected by members.

When Unite announced that it was preparing to ballot members for industrial action, Go-Ahead raised the offer to 10.5 per cent, which was accepted. 

The workers covered by the agreement work for Go-Ahead London Central, Go-Ahead General and Metrobus.

The pay increase means that Go-Ahead bus drivers are currently among the best paid in London. 

Unite regional officer Bruce Swan said: “Credit must go to our reps at Go-Ahead, whose hard work and dedication were critical to ensuring that a greatly improved pay deal was secured for members.” 

A spokesman for Go-Ahead said: “We are pleased to have recently concluded a pay deal for most of our drivers and engineers, which makes a rewarding career with Go-Ahead London even more attractive.

“The agreement reflects the current cost of living and will make a real difference to our 6,000 front line colleagues.” 

Picture: Wikimedia Commons / Secret Coach Park

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