Fresh Tube strike set to cause six days of disruption in January

Image above: A shuttered Tube station during a previous strike; library image

Disruption will begin on Sunday 7 January until Friday 12 January

The ongoing dispute between London Underground and the RMT union is set to cause significant disruption to services this month, with strikes starting on Sunday evening (7 January) until the morning of Friday 12 January. If the strike goes ahead, commuters can expect minimal to no service across the tube network during these dates.

The strike action, called because of disagreements over pay and conditions, is scheduled to be staggered. RMT members operating in the tube’s network control functions will initiate the strike on January 7 and 8. Following this, those involved in the signalling and service control functions will be off duty on January 9 and 11. Members in  engineering, fleet maintenance, stations, and train operators will join the strike on January 8 and 10.

To accommodate the anticipated disruption, Tube services will finish running earlier than usual on Sunday. Passengers are recommended to complete their journeys by 5.30pm. Services to lines serving the Emirates stadium, where Arsenal is scheduled to play Liverpool, will continue until 7.30pm.

Commuters should expect severe disruption from Monday, 8 January, through Thursday, January 11, with minimal to no Tube service. Normal Tube services are expected to resume by noon on Friday, 12 January, but with a delayed start.

While the Elizabeth line, London Overground, DLR, London Trams, and London buses are planned to operate as usual, there might be last-minute alterations, and they are expected to be significantly busier than normal. Some train services may also bypass stations shared with the London Underground.

Images above: Mayor of London Sadiq Khan (left), RMT General Secretary Mick Lynch (right); library images

RMT urge TfL and Mayor of London to join unconditional talks

Transport for London has been in constructive discussions with the RMT and other trade unions regarding a pay increase for London Underground staff. TfL has proposed a five per cent increase, a proposition already accepted by ASLEF members.

RMT members voted overwhelmingly, with a 90% majority, to reject an offer that falls below the inflation rate. The union is also advocating for the reinstatement of full staff travel facilities to prevent what they deem as the creation of a two-tier workforce.

In response, the RMT has urged TfL and the Mayor to engage in unconditional talks mediated by ACAS in a bid to resolve the dispute.

Glynn Barton, TfL’s Chief Operating Officer, said:

“We are disappointed that RMT is planning strike action in response to our offer of a five per cent pay increase. We have been clear throughout our productive discussions with our trade unions that this offer is the most we can afford while ensuring that we can operate safely, reliably and sustainably.

“We encourage the RMT to engage with us to avoid disruption for Londoners. We would like to advise anyone travelling during the strike days to check before they travel.”

RMT general secretary Mick Lynch said:

“Our members have made it clear that they are prepared to take action and we urge TfL to enter into meaningful conciliatory talks to avert disruption in the capital.”