Londoners cram onto remaining Tube trains as five lines hit by strike

26 November 2021, 08:04 | Updated: 26 November 2021, 08:58

Long queues for buses as tube drivers strike

By Daisy Stephens

Driver strikes have caused travel chaos on the London Underground during Friday's rush hour.

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A 24-hour strike began at 4.30am on Friday, affecting the Central, Jubilee, Northern, Piccadilly, Waterloo & City and Victoria lines.

Transport for London (TfL) said the Piccadilly and Waterloo & City lines are completely suspended, whilst a special service is running on the Central, Jubilee, Northern and Victoria lines.

Picket lines were mounted outside some Tube stations from early morning.

Commuters are being advised to expect other services to be much busier than usual, and to check before they travel.

Read more: London Tube strike: When is it happening and what lines will be disrupted?

Members of the Rail, Maritime and Transport (RMT) union have walked out in a dispute over new shift patterns.

The union said their members are being asked to work both night shifts and day shifts after dedicated night staff were axed.

The Night Tube is due to resume on Friday, and further walkouts are planned in coming weeks.

Nick reacts to Night Tube drivers planning on strike action

RMT general secretary Mick Lynch said: "This strike is about the ripping apart of popular and family-friendly agreements that helped make the original Night Tube such a success.

"Instead the company want to cut costs and lump all drivers into a pool where they can be kicked from pillar to post at the behest of the management."

He said the union had made several efforts to resolve the dispute with London Underground.

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He added: "This strike action, and its serious consequences in the run-up to Christmas, was avoidable if the Tube management hadn't axed dedicated Night Tube staff and perfectly workable arrangements in order to cut staffing numbers and costs."

Nick Dent, director of London Underground customer operations, said: "The RMT's planned strike action is needless and it will threaten London's recovery from the pandemic, despite no job losses and more flexibility and job certainty for drivers.

"While every other union has agreed to these changes and our staff have been enjoying the benefits of the changes since August, we're willing to work with the RMT and review the changes after Night Tube services have returned."