A spokesman for Northern said: “We have offered a two-year pay deal, which will see more than 5,000 Northern employees receive a 2.2% increase for the current year (backdated to April 2016). There will be a further increase of 2.4% or January 2017 Retail Price Inflation (whichever is greater) for the year from April 2017.  

“Northern has also offered to implement a new loyalty scheme which will see all non-managers rewarded for long service, with voucher payments made after 10, 20 and 25 years’ service and every five years thereafter. Further pay boosts have been put in place for specific staff who are at the lower end of the Northern pay scale.”  

The spokesman added: “The offer has been accepted by trade unions locally, but must now be agreed at a national level. Throughout the discussions we have emphasised our commitment to investing in our people and working towards a satisfactory conclusion and are pleased to have been able to reach agreement, in principle, over a deal which gives financial stability for employees until April 2018.”