Strikes threatened by Gatwick security guards have been called off after a “dramatically improved” pay offer was made.

The 48-hour walkout planned for this weekend (August 10-12) and a further four days from August 20 were dropped following fresh pay talks.

The decision by the Unite union to suspend the strikes came 24 hours after it warned that the chances of resolving the dispute had receded.

The union added that “extremely productive” pay talks yesterday had led to a new pay offer being made by security firm ICTS (UK) which employs the130 staff at the airport to scan passengers’ luggage for explosive materials and other dangerous and prohibited materials.

The workers will now be balloted on the new offer with a recommendation to accept.

ICTS (UK) made a commitment to become a fully accredited real living wage employer as part of the pay talks, the first company at Gatwick to make this breakthrough, the union added.

Unite regional officer Jamie Major said: “Today’s pay talks were extremely productive and the new pay offer will be balloted on by members.

“The commitment by ICTS to become a real living wage employer is welcome and Unite will be applying pressure to other Gatwick employers to follow suit.

“Following this pay offer it is hoped that there will be more harmonious industrial relations with ICTS moving forward.”