Tube strike: Last-ditch talks ahead of Tuesday's walkout by 10,000 TfL staff

28 February 2022, 12:00 | Updated: 28 February 2022, 13:03

Tube strikes will bring the London Underground to a halt on Tuesday and Thursday
Tube strikes will bring the London Underground to a halt on Tuesday and Thursday. Picture: Alamy

By Emma Soteriou

Last-minute talks have begun between Transport for London (TfL) and the Rail, Maritime and Transport union (RMT) ahead of a strike set to cause travel chaos throughout the rest of the week.

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Members of the RMT are walking out as part of an ongoing dispute over pensions, jobs and conditions, with severe disruption expected as a result.

However, TfL has criticised the industrial action, saying there are no proposals on pensions or terms and conditions, and nobody has or will lose their jobs because of the proposals it set out.

RMT general secretary Mick Lynch argued that the strike was taking place due to the "deliberately engineered" financial crisis London Underground (LU) currently faces.

He added: "These are the very same transport staff praised as heroes for carrying London through Covid for nearly two years, often at serious personal risk, who now have no option but to strike to defend their livelihoods.

"The politicians need to wake up to the fact that transport staff will not pay the price for this cynically engineered crisis.

"In addition to the strike action, RMT is co-ordinating a campaign of resistance with colleagues from other unions impacted by this threat."

Both parties met twice in the last two weeks, but no progress has been made as of yet.

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Andy Lord, TfL's Chief Operating Officer, said: "I would ask anyone who needs to use the Tube on 1 and 3 March to check before they make their journey, consider whether they are able to work from home and use alternative modes of transport where possible.

"It's highly unlikely there will be an Underground service running during the strike action and services are likely to be affected on the mornings of 2 and 4 March too.

"I apologise to customers for this and understand they will be frustrated by this strike action, but urge them not to take it out on those who are trying to help.

"We haven’t proposed any changes to pensions or terms and conditions, and nobody has or will lose their jobs because of the proposals we have set out, so this action is completely unnecessary.

"We know our customers deserve better than this and that is why we're urging the RMT to talk to us so we can find a resolution to this dispute and call off this action, which is threatening London’s recovery from the pandemic."

How long will the strikes be on for?

If there is no agreement from Monday's talks, there will be no service on the London Underground network on Tuesday 1 March and Thursday 3 March.

However, it is expected to severely impact services the following mornings too - on March 2 and March 4.

Long-term strikes that have been taking place on Friday and Saturday evenings since the beginning of the year will also go ahead this week.

Why are they going ahead?

RMT claimed that the "financial crisis at LU has been deliberately engineered by the Government to drive a cuts agenda which would savage jobs, services, safety and threaten their working conditions and pensions".

However, TfL has insisted that nobody has or will lose their jobs because of the proposals TfL has set out on jobs.

Which lines will be affected?

All Tube lines will be affected by the upcoming strikes on Tuesday and Thursday.

The weekend strikes will impact the Night Tube on Central and Victoria lines.

What is being advised?

Commuters have been told to expect severe disruption across all Tube lines for the rest of the week.

TfL recommended that people travel later in the day on Wednesday and Friday, the days after the strikes.