Further travel chaos on Central London tube lines due to strikes

23 February 2020, 12:19

Travellers are facing another day of chaos on the Tube today
Travellers are facing another day of chaos on the Tube today. Picture: PA
Nick Hardinges

By Nick Hardinges

Commuters and tourists are facing further travel chaos on Sunday because of a second 24-hour Tube drivers strike.

Members of the Rail, Maritime and Transport (RMT) union are locked in a dispute with London Underground (LU) over timetable changes.

Staff planned to walk out of the Bakerloo line at noon on Sunday, following a day-long stoppage on Saturday that forced commuters to significantly alter their journeys in the capital by using alternative routes and replacement bus services.

RMT said it had made intensive efforts to make progress in talks at the conciliation service Acas, and accused LU of failing to rectify the issues raised.

The Bakerloo Line will be closed again on Sunday
The Bakerloo Line will be closed again on Sunday. Picture: PA

Mick Cash, the union's general secretary, said: "RMT is angry and frustrated that hard work by our reps aimed at reaching a negotiated solution to this dispute has been wasted as the company have played us along and failed to make any kind of serious progress.

"Drivers voted overwhelmingly for action in this dispute which is all about the management imposing timetable changes on the Bakerloo line without any serious recognition of the stress impact on the operators expected to implement them.

"You cannot place intolerable stress and pressure on Tube drivers that impacts on their safety-critical role, and that is what this dispute is all about."

Nick Dent, LU's director of line operations, said: "We apologise to our customers for the unnecessary disruption this strike could cause, and will keep them informed as we continue to try to resolve the dispute.

"We met with the unions last week to outline the steps we have taken already and to talk through their concerns so that we can move forwards. I would urge the RMT to continue working collaboratively with us to resolve these issues."

LU said it was unlikely any services would be running on the Bakerloo line until late Monday afternoon.

The Circle, District, Hammersmith & City and Metropolitan lines will also be closed in central London this weekend for testing of the new signalling system that will "hugely" increase capacity on the lines once completed.

The Northern line will also be closed between Moorgate and Kennington due to work on the Bank station upgrade.