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Great Western Railway: Holiday Pay Entitlement

13 July 2016

TSSA information on GWR’s Proposal to Introduce a Holiday Pay scheme


TSSA along with the other trade unions have been in negotiation with GWR around the introduction of a Holiday pay scheme for many months. This is as a result of recent case law based on the interpretation of the Working Time (Amendment) Regulations 2007. Where workers or employees carry out duties that receive payment linked to their “normal remuneration” (i.e. overtime) or are “intrinsically linked” to performing their role (i.e. Commission) then in order to encourage them to take their statutory annual leave under the European Working time Directive (4 weeks) they should receive payment based on the pay that they would receive whilst in work during those 4 weeks leave.

Several other Railway employers and train operating companies have done deals to put in place payment schemes so it is positive that we have got to the stage with GWR.

Key points of the proposal

The interpretation of some of the legislation is still open to challenges; however we have a proposal that will mean that if there are any future changes in legislation or case law that we can revisit the agreement, the proposals can be accessed here the main elements of the deal are that:

· The first payment will be calculated on the entitlement backdated to 1 January 2015 spanning up to April 2016

· For future years an annual payment will be made no later than 12 weeks after the first pay day of the new financial year in April

· The payment will be made up of 4 weeks’ worth of the total “included” payments that the individual received in that tax year – Included payments are shown in Table A on page 2 of the proposal

· For those who still receive Annual Leave Premium we wanted to ensure that your contractual rights were still intact, therefore if you receive less during the tax year than with the new scheme you will receive a top up of the difference at the point that others receive their payment.

It’s important to point out that the amount of the payments that you receive will be proportionate to the amount of overtime, rest days, Sundays, Commission etc that you work. For some there may be no payment due to the fact that your salary encompasses everything that you do, for others the payments may be greater.

For a copy of the full proposals please click here (if it doesn't load immediately then please refresh the page)

Where we are

During the negotiations TSSA pushed for there to be some provision for those on Long term sick, Maternity, Paternity and adoption leave to ensure that they don’t lose out on holiday pay. However as there is no case law on this matter GWR were reluctant to amend the proposals to cater for those individuals. TSSA also pushed to ensure that those in unstructured grades had their contractual entitlements protected which the company did concede to, jointly the trade unions managed to push the backdated amount back from April 2015 to January of that year. GWR also made it clear that this was a final offer. Having canvassed your TSSA representatives it was felt that it was best to agree to this proposal and get it into payment rather than delay any further and so I have written to the company to agree to the proposals.

Next steps

We are awaiting some of the other trade unions agreeing to the deal and once there is more information we will let you know.

If you have received this circular via post and would prefer to receive emails or you have other changes to make to your details like home address or job title then please update them online at

Please also remember that we are only able to achieve these improvements by having a strong membership so encourage your colleagues to be a member of a trade union, they can join TSSA by asking a rep for a membership form or online at

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