A bin collection strike in Elmbridge was averted today (November 4) after waste collection workers and their private contractor agreed a last minute deal.

Workers represented by the GMB trade union had been set to begin strike action in Elmbridge and Surrey Heath tomorrow (November 5).

On Monday morning, a last minute deal between GMB and private contractors Amey was announced, averting the industrial action.

GMB said that Amey had agreed to their demands for an improved pay deal "at the 11th hour" after revising their previously tabled offered to workers represented by the union.

A spokesperson for GMB told the Comet:

"Members delivering the waste services in Elmbridge and Surrey Heath were due to go on strike starting this week over pay, and particularly a disparity between rates of pay between the depots.

"Amey contacted GMB on Friday for last-minute talks and put another offer on the table, which was this morning accepted by the members, thus calling off the strike action in the process."

GMB's Regional Officer Paul Grafton meanwhile offered further details of the new agreement between Amey and workers, describing today's outcome as a "good result".

"Amey eventually offered pay deals for GMB members between 4 per cent and 18.1 per cent over 2 years so that the depots’ disparity in pay is resolved," Mr Grafton said.

"Our members were very happy to see this matter resolved after months of difficult negotiations. Whilst the members did not want to take industrial action, they were fully prepared for it.”

"This is a good result for the members, and really shows what results you can achieve when you stand together, united against your employer," he added.

Amey also praised the resolution reached between them and the people they employ to avert strike action.

A spokesperson for Amey told the Comet:

"We are pleased to have reached a resolution with the GMB and agreed parity on inherited pay differences for our workers in our Surrey Waste contracts.

"The GMB have informed us that our revised pay offer has been accepted and consequently the proposed strike has been called off.

"We remain committed to our people and customers and throughout our negotiations with the GMB our utmost priority was to ensure minimal disruption to the community."