Leeds bus workers have suspended their all-out strike, which was due to start on Tuesday (26 July), after employer First West Yorkshire made ‘a new improved’ pay offer.
Union Unite, said its 1,000 bus workers would be voting on a two-year pay deal over the next fortnight, with the result of the ballot known on 11 August.
A First bus in Leeds
Unite regional officer Phil Bown said: ‘The indefinite bus strike, due to have started in Leeds tomorrow, has been suspended after the company First West Yorkshire came forward with a much improved two-year pay offer after protracted talks on Friday.
'We appreciate that the threat of strike action has caused concern to the travelling public in Leeds, but Unite believes that the new offer on the table offers an excellent opportunity to resolve this dispute.’
The union said the one remaining issue that had to be resolved was the dismissal of its branch secretary, ‘who was one of the architects of the new deal’. It is awaiting a date for an appeal hearing with one of the company’s senior directors.
Mr Bown said: ‘We fully expect that he will be reinstated once the appeal hearing has been held.’
It added that issues relating to 13 other members who had been subjected to disciplinary action, including two further sackings, ‘have been resolved to the union’s satisfaction’.
Paul Matthews, managing director for First West Yorkshire said: ‘I'm pleased that Unite have suspended strike action. Although the dispute is not yet resolved we are hopeful the offer will be accepted and avoid any further disruption for our customers.’