Letter: Rail dispute figures add up to confusion

Sir: In today's World At One, Jimmy Knapp claimed that 30 per cent of his members in signalling would be worse off under Railtrack's latest offer. In contrast, Robert Horton claimed that some signalmen would be 16 per cent better off, some people must lose under any package, and the losers would be compensated. How many will get 16 per cent more? Why must some lose under any package (or did Sir Robert mean lose relatively?). How and by how much will losers be compensated?

As so often in similar disputes, the public cannot make its own judgement in the absence of clear and authoritative figures. Why cannot Acas set down for all to see, as precisely as possible, what is involved for different groups of workers, gainers and losers, under Railtrack's proposals.

Yours faithfully,



21 June