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Ascot suggest alternative travel plans as rail strike threatens to ruin Royal meeting

Racegoers queue up to enter Royal Ascot.

Ascot organisers have today suggested alternative travel plans to racegoers, as a rail strike threatens to disrupt the Royal meeting, which kicks off next week.

South West Railway and the National Union of Rail, Maritime and Transport Workers have been involved in an ongoing dispute for a number of months now. Workers decided that a strike was the only way to get their point across, with the SWR confirming today that they will only be putting a skeleton rail service on while the strike is in progress, leaving prospective Royal Ascot attendees scratching their heads.

Ascot has found themselves caught in the middle of this dispute. The timing could not be any worse, with hundreds of thousands of racing fans set to descend upon the Berkshire venue from all corners of the country, ready to enjoy five days of fun and frivolity at Royal Ascot. This rail strike certainly throws a spanner in the works, but organisers have, today, announced certain measures and contingencies to try and get around the situation.

Ascot's director of racing and communications, Nick Smith said today, "We will communicate with customers if there's no resolution and we're in regular discussion with SWR."

"They will be putting in contingency plans and, from our perspective, the advice to customers will be that if they travel by train there will be delays and congestion."

"So they should consider driving to the meeting over the five days, as we have a number of pay on the day car parks which we can open up if necessary and they would, of course, be clearly signposted."

Currently, SWR’s skeleton service mixes trains with rail-replacement buses during the five days of Royal Ascot. Passengers using the Waterloo to Reading service from next Tuesday still face the prospect of long delays as they try to make their way to Royal Ascot by train.

Making the journey by car may be the most sensible plan. If you've never driven to Ascot before, directions and parking information can be easily accessed on here on the Ascot website. Good luck!


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Ascot suggest alternative travel plans as rail strike threatens to ruin Royal meeting

Ascot organisers have today suggested alternative travel plans to racegoers, as a rail strike threatens to disrupt the Royal meeting, which kicks off next week on Tuesday 18th June.

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