Rail strike to cause complete chaos for 30,000 fans due to visit Milton Keynes for Women's Euros semi-finals this week

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Travel plans for 30,000 women’s football fans due to descend upon MK this week will be disrupted by a rail strike.

Passengers have been warned not to travel tomorrow (Wednesday) as the rail strike is expected to shut half of the UK’s network.

Nearly 100,000 rail staff are due to walk out as the unions continue their dispute over pay.

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This will mean a major headache for all those who have booked tickets to see France play Germany in the semi-finals of the Women’s Euros at MK Stadium.

This was the size of the crowd at MK Stadium for the recent Spain V Finland gameThis was the size of the crowd at MK Stadium for the recent Spain V Finland game
This was the size of the crowd at MK Stadium for the recent Spain V Finland game

Network Rail says there will be a very limited timetable running between 7.30am and 6.30pm across the UK and some areas will have no service at all.

But if the fans travel by car, that will mean an impossible parking problem and severe road congestion for MK.

The UEFA’s website is today advising fans not to travel to the Milton Keynes stadium by train or car at all.

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It states: ‘There is a national rail strike on the day of semi-final in Milton Keynes, so travelling to the match by train will not be possible. If you were planning to take the train, please check the alternative options on our dedicated travel page.’

The website adds: ‘Please plan your journey carefully with plenty of time to spare so that you can enjoy the footie to the max without having to worry about getting to the stadium in time. Gates for this match will exceptionally open at 17:30, and with the Station Square Fan Party in full swing as of 12:00, there are plenty of reasons to make your way to Milton Keynes early.”

A shuttle bus will be running running from the city centre to the stadium, while National Express has two coach services arriving from London Victoria at 3pm and then at 5pm.

The rail staff set to walk out are members of the Rail Maritime and Transport Workers union (RMT), Transport Salaried Staffs’ Association (TSSA) and (Associated Society of Locomotive Engineers and Firemen (ASLEF).

The RMT wants a pay rise in rise with inflation, together with protection against job cuts, in the midst of a cost of living crisis.