Residents in Clydebank fear “hellish” travel conditions amid train strikes and key road closures ahead of the arrival of 25,000 delegates for a global conference on climate change.

World leaders, politicians, climate change activists and journalists from across the globe will be in Glasgow in a matter of days for COP26 UN Climate Change conference – the biggest summit ever hosted in the country.

Large-scale transport disruption has previously been predicted during the conference, with major roads in the city closed to traffic.

However, ScotRail workers have also announced a strike – backed by the RMT union – during COP26 from November 1 to 12 amid a dispute over pay and conditions.

Sunday train services in Scotland have been crippled for months as workers protest over pay and conditions.

Mick Lynch, RMT general secretary, said: “ScotRail have had adequate time to come up with a fair pay settlement for Scotland’s rail workers in advance of COP26.

“Instead they have kicked the can down the road and left us with no option but to put this action on.

“It’s time for all parties to take their rail workers seriously, get back round the table and give these staff at the front line of our green transport services the justice, respect and reward they deserve.”

Clydebank Post:

A spokesperson from ScotRail said: “It’s extremely disappointing that the RMT have opted to continue with this highly damaging strike action, particularly when a pay offer, negotiated over several weeks, has been made to the trade unions.

“We’re seeing customers gradually return, but the scale of the financial situation ScotRail is facing is stark.

“To build a more sustainable and greener railway for the future and reduce the burden on the taxpayer, we need to change.”

Regular train commuter, Amy Scott from Whitecrook, told the Post: “I don’t even want to think about the carnage this will cause. It hasn’t been well thought out and now the local residents have to pay the price.

“This is going to be living hell for the next month as I attempt to travel to work by bus and other means. I understand why we need this conference and I agree with what it stands for, but so far I am only hearing about how it will disrupt our lives instead of improving it.

“The strikes are going to be a financial burden as I will have to spend more money finding other routes to get to work.

In recent weeks bus operators across the country have been facing a driver shortage leading to a number of services cancelled.

First Bus which operates a number of services throughout Clydebank and surrounding areas have confirmed to the Post that there will be no strike action during the COP26 event – but there will be no additional services either.

Clydebank Post:

A spokesperson said: “First Glasgow are not planning to run any additional services during the events, due to our current driver shortage issue meaning we are at full capacity in terms of staffing levels.

“We do, however, still have a comprehensive network of services already in place available to customers and with passenger levels still in recovery mode from Covid-19, we do have capacity for customers new and current choosing the bus to move around the city during COP26.”

Chris Neil, an IT analyst from Clydebank, said: “I was worried taking the bus to work in the city centre when Covid restrictions eased. Now my fears have been heightened because there will be more people wanting to take the bus, but no additional services.

“ I highly doubt that there will be room for social distancing when they will pack in us like pigs to accommodate everyone. I think somebody needs to think about the damage the strikes will cause to society.”

Elsewhere, Clydebank hotels are largely inflated prices for accommodation during COP26, with many venues completely sold out.

The cost for an overnight stay during the climate change conference in the West Park Hotel is more than three times the usual room rate and is priced at a staggering £300.

While other venues in the town such as The Golden Jubilee and The Titan are fully booked.

Dunbartonshire Chamber of Commerce chief executive Damon Scott recognises the benefits COP26 will bring to the local economy and justified business increasing prices.

He said: “As private enterprises it is very much up to the individual accommodation business to set their price and this is very normal whenever large events take place around the world.”

The council chief highlights that with 30,000 delegates attending the event the economic impact to Dunbartonshire will be “significant”.

He added: “The hospitality sector will be the big winner with accommodation across the board booked up but secondary spend will also be important too.”

The West Park Hotel has been contacted for comment.