UNITE tram strike victory

Unite the union members at West Midlands Metro have accepted a pay offer which is worth up to 20 per cent for tram drivers, with all grades receiving significant increases.

As result of the pay offer being accepted all scheduled industrial action has been called off.

18 days of their threatened 53 days of strikes was enough for the UNITE members to be victorious.

After all out strike from 28 November had been threatened by UNITE, a new pay offer was made by West Midlands Metro. Strikes on 16, 17, 18 November were suspended while the offer was discussed.

see https://www.unitetheunion.org/news-events/news/2022/november/midlands-metro-strikes-suspended-following-improved-pay-offer/

Two pickets were maintained at the Wednesbury depot

The senior rep was been dismissed by the employer, currently going through due process.


They took strike action on October: 15, 18, 20, 22, 24, 26, 29 and 31 and November: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 8, 10, 12, 14, 15 and had plans for indefinite action.

A message from your tram drivers, customer service representatives, engineers and other Metro staff:

We love our jobs.
But right now struggling to make ends meet on just £10-50 an hour.

  • one of the lowest rates in the UK for the same job.

Our pay is so low we cant pay our bills.
We in the West Midlands are paid LESS than other tram drivers and customer service representatives in the UK

  • the average pay for tram drivers in the UK is £30,463
  • WEST MIDLANDS METRO tram drivers are paid £21,939
    We’ve only asked for a minimum Wage rate of £27,OO0

With RPI inflation at 12.3% and the cost of fuel food and energy jumping, our bosses’ offer of 5.25% is a massive pay cut and not enough.
Taking strike action was not an easy decision for us.
But we had no other option and have had to take substantial action to make them listen.
We’d like to thank you for your patience and support.

Please help us get back to work as soon as possible and end the disruption by emailing
customerservices@westmidiandsmetro.com and asking the company to pay us a wage we can live on.

You can also send a message on their social platforms
Twitter: @WMMetro Facebook: WMMetro

UNITE West Midlands has appealed for donations to their branch, to be utilised to support these members throughout the coming months, some who will be suffering a financial loss due to taking part in this industrial action. Make payments direct to their branch: 

UNITE WM/7087 Branch Sort Code – 60-83-01 Account Number – 20189480

All donations will be greatly appreciated.  

Day 1 dispute Coverage

BBC TV news Coverage

ITV – TV News

UNITE West Midlands Metro workers have voted decisively to strike on 53 days in a dispute over “poverty wages”.

Unite represents over 176 workers on the West Midlands Metro and recorded a yes vote of 86 per cent on an 84 per cent turnout.

Unite general secretary Sharon Graham said: “It is disgraceful that despite our members undertaking extremely demanding and responsible jobs and ensuring that Birmingham and the Black Country keeps moving, they are paid poverty wages.

“Unite always fights tooth and nail for its members as it ensures that their jobs, pay and conditions are defended and enhanced. Our members at Midlands Metro will receive the union’s unswerving support.”

The workers are seeking a minimum pay rate of £27,000 for tram drivers/customer representatives and a £5,000 increase for all other grades, which can start at £21,537.