The Longest-Ever London Underground Strike Will Begin This Weekend

Alex Landon Alex Landon - Editor

Longest tube strike

As disputes between TfL and the RMT Union continue surrounding the working hours of Night Tube drivers, the union made a big announcement for industrial action in 2022. RMT confirmed that drivers on the Central and Victoria lines would be taking strike action every weekend from Friday, January 7, 2022, all the way through until June 2022, in a bid to protest against the Night Tube staffing arrangements. It’s the longest planned Tube strike ever announced by RMT, and will dramatically reduce, or entirely cancel, Night Tube services on the two lines. And it starts tonight…

RMT confirmed yesterday (Thursday, January 6) that the planned industrial action would proceed as planned, which means there’s going to be a vastly disrupted service on the Central and Victoria lines over the coming weekends. TfL is warning of disruptions from “19:00 every Friday and Saturday, with little or no service through the night”, which is going to have a drastic impact on the Night Tube. With no Night Tube services returning on the Northern, Piccadilly, or Jubilee lines yet, the strikes leave the Night Overground service between Highbury & Islington and New Cross Gate as the only overnight service running properly at weekends.

RMT’s General Secretary Mick Lynch said in a statement “Our members have been reballoted and have delivered a solid mandate for action”. RMT’s position is that the proposed changes to the Night Tube jobs will have major consequences for the work-life balance of drivers, and have countered with their own “cost neutral proposals”.

As of yet, RMT and London Underground bosses have been unable to reach an agreement, and whilst the union stressed that they “remain available for further talks”, this latest action marks the most dramatic counter-move yet. The union also made clear that the mandate they’d been given by members extended to other lines, and that they would consider broadening the strike action if London Underground failed to respond.

Andy Lord, Managing Director of London Underground, said: “We’re disappointed that, once again, the RMT is continuing to push for strike action that is likely to cause further unnecessary disruption […] If these six months of action do go ahead, we will continue to operate as regular a service as possible. However, customers are advised to check before they travel and use buses to complete their journeys where required.” We’ll keep you updated with any further news as it arrives.

Also published on Medium.

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