SWR Strike Action

Published: 04 January 2023

Five days of strike action across the South Western Railway network, Tuesday 3 to Sunday 8 January 2023

  • Due to the planned national strikes, SWR customers are urged only to travel by rail if absolutely necessary from Tuesday 3 to Sunday 8 January 2023
  • From Tuesday 3 to Sunday 8 January, strike action will see a severely reduced service between 07:15 and 18:30, on a limited number of routes, for customers who have to travel
  • On Thursday 5 January there will be no services on the Island Line due to strike action by the ASLEF Union
  • Sunday 8 January will also be impacted by the strike; first trains across the network will start from around 07:30 and are likely to be very busy
  • SWR also remind customers that there will be a limited number of additional services from London Waterloo to help them get home from New Year’s Eve events

South Western Railway (SWR) is urging customers to only travel if absolutely necessary from Tuesday 3 to Sunday 8 January due to strike action. The latest information and details of which services are running can be found here.

National strike action by the RMT union on Tuesday 3, Wednesday 4, Friday 6 and Saturday 7 will mean a severely reduced service on infrastructure made available by Network Rail. Trains will run between 07:15 and 18:30 only.

On Thursday 5, national strike action by the ASLEF union, which will affect depot drivers and significantly limit the number of trains that can be brought into service, will again mean a severely reduced service and the same timetable operating as on other strike days. This strike action will also impact drivers on the Island Line and so there will be no Island Line services on Thursday 5 January.

Significant parts of the network will be closed entirely between Tuesday 3 and Saturday 7 January. Those trains that are running will be far less frequent and much busier than normal.

Due to the impact of these strike days, customers are also advised to check before travelling on Sunday 8 January, when first trains will start from around 07:30 and are likely to be very busy. A regular weekend timetable will operate on Sunday 8 January after this late start up.

SWR’s reduced timetable will consist of:

  • Four trains per hour in each direction between London Waterloo and Windsor & Eton Riverside
  • Two semi-fast trains per hour in each direction between London Waterloo and Basingstoke
  • Four trains per hour in each direction between London Waterloo and Woking
  • Two fast trains per hour in each direction between London Waterloo and Southampton Central

Trains will not stop at all the stations on these routes. There will be no SWR services across the rest of the network.

SWR would also like to remind customers that on Saturday 31 December, New Year’s Eve, services will finish by 2200. To help customers return from New Year’s Eve celebrations in the capital, a limited number of additional services will run from London Waterloo between 0030 and 0315 on Sunday 1 January, New Year’s Day. Customers intending to travel to London and back should check both parts of their journeys carefully.

South Western Railway’s Managing Director, Claire Mann, said:

“I’m sorry that due to the damaging, national strike action by both the RMT and ASLEF unions, a severely reduced service will operate on our network. We must urge our customers to only travel if absolutely necessary between Tuesday 3 and Sunday 8 January.

“Large parts of our network will be closed between Tuesday 3 and Sunday 8 January. On Sunday 8 January there will be a late start to services and so we urge our customers to carefully check their journeys, before they travel, using journey planners.

“We share our customers’ frustration over this nationwide strike action and the impact it has on our network and services. We are grateful to our customers for their continued cooperation, patience, and understanding as the rail industry works to bring this damaging strike action to an end.”

Notes to Editors:

There will be no service on The Island Line on Thursday 5 January. On all other days a standard timetable will operate where possible, but services may be affected by strike action on the mainland.

21 additional services will run between 0030 and 0315 on Sunday 1 January, from London Waterloo to Basingstoke, Guildford, Kingston, Reading, Staines, Strawberry Hill, Twickenham and Woking. More information can be found here.



First MTR South Western Trains Limited trading as South Western Railway, registered in England Company No 07900320. Registered office: 8th Floor The Point, 37 North Wharf Road, London, United Kingdom, W2 1AF
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