BUS passengers are being warned as Arriva North West staff are set to stage five further one-day strikes.

More than 2,000 driver and engineering staff across 11 depots, including Winsford and Macclesfield, will take industrial action over ‘inadequate pay’ on November 6, 8, 13, 20 and 27.

The Unite members also protested on October 17, 23 and 30 but talks between the union and the bus operator are believed to have broken down.

Cllr Gaynor Sinar, Cheshire West and Chester Council, said: “This is going to have an effect on people going to work and those using the town centres.

“Last year when GHA Coaches went into administration I asked a CWAC committee whether there was a plan B in for that situation and I was categorically told that there wasn’t.

“I had hoped that there would be some sort of crisis management plan now..

“I would suggest emergency bus services while the strikes are going ahead. This is in no way trying to undermine the staff and their cause but people’s lives may be affected by this.

“But in terms of the staff, they need to be appreciated for the extra work they’re being asking to do which could come through an increase in pay.”

Unite is calling for the company to take steps to address 'wage inequality' between depots which currently can be as much as £1.73 an hour.

John Boughton, Unite regional officer, said: “It is very disappointing that talks broke down yesterday, especially given that Arriva is owned by the German transport giant Deutsche Bahn AG and has huge financial resources.

“The workers are fed up with this continuing diet of inadequate pay offers when the company makes handsome profits, yet our members struggle to make ends meet as wages lag behind rising inflation.

“We appreciate that these strikes will cause disruption to the travelling public, but the ball is very much in the company’s court.

“They have the financial clout to settle this dispute at the stroke of a pen.”