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About 3,000 London bus drivers and engineers have secured a 10.5% pay rise, Unite says.

It comes after the union announced it was preparing to ballot members for industrial action.

The agreement with bus operator Go-Ahead will benefit workers who operate routes across south London, and makes its drivers among the best paid in London.

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The union says the deal follows intensive negotiations.

Go-Ahead initially offered a final offer of 9% but this was rejected by members, Unite says, adding management then made another offer of 10.5%, which members accepted.

The company is the largest Transport for London bus operator in London, running 2,300 buses on a quarter of all routes in the capital.

Those covered by the latest agreement work for Go-Ahead London Central, Go-Ahead General and Metrobus based in:

  • Bexleyheath
  • Camberwell
  • Croydon
  • Merton
  • Morden Wharfe
  • New Cross
  • Orpington
  • Peckham
  • Putney
  • Stockwell
  • Sutton
  • Waterloo
  • Waterside Way

Unite’s general secretary Sharon Graham said it waSs “an important win” for workers, adding they were “fully prepared to face down management”.

She said: “Unite’s commitment to prioritising the jobs, pay and conditions of its members is paying dividends and the pay deal at Go-Ahead is a clear example of the success of this strategy.”

The union is still negotiating pay deals or balloting members employed by other bus operators in London.

A Go-Ahead London spokesperson said: “We are pleased to have recently concluded a pay deal for most of our drivers and engineers.

“The agreement reflects the current cost of living and will make a real difference to our 6,000 frontline colleagues.”

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