RAIL users in the Tyne Valley were hit by yet another day of disruption last Saturday as the RMT confirmed its 43rd day of strike action on Northern Rail services.

The ongoing strike action is part of a long running dispute between the rail union and Northern over the role of guards on trains, with the RMT also criticising a rise in fares from the start of the new year.

Last month, Northern asked the employment arbitration service ACAS to intervene in its two-year dispute with the RMT, but the deadlock has continued.

A spokesman from the Tyne Valley Rail Users Group said: “We will be doing all we can with our colleagues at the Tyne Valley Community Rail Partnership, to help Northern secure the positive improvements they themselves seek from May 2019 onwards.”

The strike action comes after national rail fares were increased last Wednesday by an average of 3.1 per cent despite a raft of issues in 2018.

Rail campaign group, Railfuture, described the latest rise in fares as “another kick in the wallet” for passengers.

On a national level, one in seven trains were delayed by at least five minutes in the past 12 months and locally, passengers are still awaiting improved services.

RMT general secretary Mick Cash said: “RMT continues to make every effort to get serious and meaningful talks going with Northern. We thank the public for their support.”