AN ARRIVA bus driver expects strike action to resume after a ballot is held on a pay offer agreed between the company and Unite the Union.

Last week, around 400 of Arriva's North Wales drivers began the first of weeks of planned strike action over a pay increase dispute.

The strike was suspended on Thursday after Unite the Union and Arriva came to an agreement on a pay offer.

The bus drivers will now ballot on the offer between now and December 6.

In a letter shown to the Leader, Arriva Wales drivers were informed of the following proposals:

• An increase on the hourly rate from £11.30 to £11.40 from January 2021 to the end of March 2021.

• A further increase on the hourly rate from £11.40 to £11.64 from April 2021 to the end of March 2022.

• An increase on the hourly rate from £11.64 to £12.00 from April 2022 to the end of December 2022.

• The proposed 2021 increases will result in an approximate back pay of £575, and an increase in basic pay across the two-year deal of £1,251.

A two-week notice would then have to be served after the ballot closes before the drivers can strike again.

But a Wrexham-based bus driver believes the offer will be turned down - and that strike action will resume when allowed.

He said: "None of us are happy with the deal, and it'll almost certainly be voted down.

"The strike's suspension is nothing more than a legal technicality - with Arriva having tabled an offer which is over a certain percentage.

"But the feeling amongst all the depots is that it's simply not good enough.

"Feedback from all depots is a no to the offer, so the strike will continue after notice is served after the ballot. We don't want to resume strike action - but neither will we except any less than what's fair."

The bus driver said Arriva's "playing the situation" to ensure buses are on the roads in the weeks leading up to Christmas.

Arriva has declined to comment on the bus driver's claims.