23 December 2009
Extended talks at the Royal Opera House have concluded with agreement on a pay review in time for Christmas.
Base rates will rise by one per cent, backdated to 1 April 2009, coupled with a one-off payment of £400.
Management had previously sought to push through a non-consolidated payment of £350.
BECTU's claim has also helped to set an improved framework for apprentice pay with agreement on the national minimum wage plus 2 per cent in year one, rising to the national minimum wage plus 5 per cent in year two of any scheme.
The union's apprenticeship guidelines were used to support the discussions; the guidelines, first developed by Brian Kelly, training officer, have since been incorporated into the draft new TMA/BECTU agreement which is due for adoption in 2010.
Like many employers in the sector, the Royal Opera House is developing new opportunities for apprentices. Currently there are apprentices in scenic artistry and scenic metalwork; in 2010 apprenticeships are due to start in costume, armoury, technical theatre and community arts.