Trade union dispute delays introduction of double deckers

The introduction of double decker buses to Larne’s town service was delayed by a dispute between two transport trade unions in January 1959.

Talks between the Amalgamated Transport and General Workers’ Union and the Ulster Transport and Allied Operatives’ Union failed to take place.

The dispute arose over proposals for manning of the new two-deck vehicles.

However, a large proportion of bus drivers at the Larne depot did not belong to a trade union although indications were that support would be given for the proposed selection of crew for the double deckers, based on the length of service, despite trade union fears that their introduction could result in job losses.

The Ulster Transport Authority said that double decker buses were necessary to meet an increase in demand for town services.

The organisation gave an assurance that the development would not not result in redundancies despite widespread fears that the replacement of single decker vehicles would halve the number of drivers required.

The introduction of double decker buses locally had been approved by Larne Borough Council.