BUS drivers in Edinburgh are set to go on strike from the first day of the Festival Fringe.

It comes after a last-minute deal – which included a 2.7% pay rise and new measures to address concerns over bullying – was rejected by drivers at Lothian Buses.

Last month, union members voted for strike action ahead of talks to resolve a dispute over a “hostile” culture. According to the union, the dispute has stemmed from poor workplace relations at the firm.

Unite regional industrial officer Lyn Turner confirmed that Unite’s 1700-strong Lothian Buses membership had voted to reject the latest offer from management.

“There has been progress made in our negotiations through Acas but yesterday’s vote is testimony to the fact that this was never about pay,” she said.

“The depth of feeling from our membership about the toxic management culture speaks for itself.”

She added that members remained committed to finding a resolution and their door “remains open for talks”.

The Fringe, renowned as the world’s largest arts festival, begins in the capital on Friday and runs until August 26.

In response to the strike announcement, Lothian Buses tweeted on Friday that it was “disappointed” to inform customers of the continuous strike action.

“This means buses may not run or operate on a significantly-reduced basis. Our customers remain our absolute priority and we are doing everything we can to achieve a resolution,” it added.