BUS drivers at National Express West Midlands have voted in favour of the latest pay deal bringing an end to the strike.

Unite, the UK’s leading union, confirmed today (Saturday March 25) that an improved pay offer has been accepted which includes a one-year 16.2 per cent pay increase.

Improvements to the drivers’ accident pay and hourly rates for working over the Christmas holidays are also part of the deal which means more than 3,000 members of the Unite union will now return to work.

National Express has also guaranteed to implement new terms and conditions agreed with Unite in November last year which was a key sticking point in the dispute – a spokesperson for Unite said.

Unite general secretary Sharon Graham said: “This is an important win for Unite members. By standing together our members at National Express secured an above inflation pay offer.

“Unite will leave no stone unturned to defend workers' pay. This is yet another example of how Unite’s relentless focus on improving jobs, pay and conditions results in real 'money in the pockets' of our members.”

A spokesperson for National Express West Midlands said: “We are pleased that the drivers have voted in favour of accepting the offer.

“We apologise to our customers and the communities we serve for the significant disruption and inconvenience this has caused over the last few weeks. We are pleased to be able to put this behind us and focus on delivering a bus service that customers can rely on.”

Now that a deal has been reached, as things get back to normal there will be a reduced service in operation this Sunday (March 26) and as close to normal as possible service on Monday March 27.