Today in Southampton, the case of ticket clerk Ian Faletto reached Southampton, where a tribunal hearing was scheduled for 1000 hours. Many press representatives were present, maybe with the hope of seeing the little man triumph over dastardly South West Trains (SWT). Sadly for the hacks, and everyone else who turned up, there was no tribunal hearing.
This is because Faletto’s case was withdrawn before the hearing started. This was after SWT presented evidence to his counsel that precipitated the advice to withdraw. Faletto has conceded that he would not have won the day, but has maintained that he did clear a shopping trolley from the track at Lymington Pier station.
SWT has disputed that claim. But then, as the case did not come to a hearing, none of the evidence will be made public. This gives the Fourth Estate plenty of scope to kick both SWT and the RMT, while suggesting that Faletto is somehow innocent, despite his admission. But the why-oh-why punditry will have some difficulty, given the vehemence of SWT’s statement.
And the fact will remain that Ian Faletto’s dismissal stands, and he hasn’t been paid off. As none of the evidence held by SWT has been presented, I will not be presenting anything held by Zelo Street. But, as one long serving railway worker has said, it’s not easy for anyone with 20 years’ service to get themselves sacked by The Railway.