Strike brings more rail misery

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Rail passengers were enduring more travel misery yesterday when about a third of services were cancelled after train drivers and operators failed to agree a resolution to an industrial dispute.

The ban on overtime and rest-day working by drivers' union Aslef has caused extensive delays and overcrowding on Connex South Central services into London from Sussex, Surrey and Hampshire. The action, over a proposed restructuring deal covering pay, hours and working practices, also caused major problems for the organisers of yesterday's London to Brighton Bike Ride, and the British Heart Foundation has had to dig into its own coffers to lay on buses to transport some of the 30,000 participants back to the capital, and to refund the cost of some rail tickets. With no end in sight to the Aslef ban, travellers can expect similar levels of disruption today as on Friday, when Connex South Central was forced to cancel one in five trains.