HOPES of averting some of the rail strikes in Hampshire look likely to have been dashed, leaving the bitter dispute over the role of guards deadlocked.

Members of the Rail, Maritime and Transport (RMT) union will walk out on Monday, Wednesday and Friday on South Western Railway (SWR), affecting services around the county to stations including London Waterloo.

Arriva Rail North (Northern), Merseyrail and Greater Anglia, will also be striking, with Southern taking industrial action on Monday.

RMT general secretary Mick Cash said: “RMT has held talks with South Western Railway.

“We have set out the union’s position during those talks and we now await a formal response from the company.”

A SWR spokesman said: “We were pleased that the RMT agreed to meet with us to try and resolve the dispute.

“It was an amicable meeting and they suggested some amendments to a framework agreement we had previously suggested to them in the hope of finding a way forward.

“We are considering our position and will respond to them in due course.”

The talks concluded on Wednesday without news of a breakthrough as discussions between Arriva and the RMT broke down.

Mr Cash said: “Our members are angry and frustrated that yet again a genuine opportunity to make progress in talks has been kicked into touch.”

In response Richard Allan, Arriva Rail North’s deputy managing director, said: “The government has also recently written to the union, guaranteeing employment for conductors beyond 2025 if RMT ends its dispute.”

The news follows strike action by some staff on SWR services on New Year’s Eve, which caused disruption from Hampshire in and out of the capital.