Travellers to and from the Isle of Wight have won a pre-Christmas reprieve after strike action on ferry operator Wightlink was called off.

Transport union the RMT’s plans for industrial action on Christmas Eve and Boxing Day have been dropped following a meeting with the union’s executive.

Wightlink confirmed all sailings over the Christmas period would be reinstated to their advertised timetables.

Car ferry and passenger sailings between Portsmouth and the island would have been cancelled if the strike had gone ahead.

Wightlink said: “While the company welcomes this news and return to rationality by the RMT, the company remains extremely disappointed that the local RMT branch decided to take such extreme action over the Christmas period and seriously inconvenience the travel plans of Isle of Wight residents, visitors and businesses.”

The dispute was centred on a sacked RMT member who has now found another job.