London commuters were hit by fresh strikes as National Rail pulled out


Ondon commuters face a new strike on Thursday as workers from 14 companies leave.

The latest action by members of the RMT union affects many services used by commuters and comes as subway services are still suspended due to Wednesday’s strike.

All London Underground lines were suspended until 7.30am Thursday morning after separate strikes on Wednesday.

Passengers are warned to expect widespread disruption, with similar future strike dates on Saturday, Thursday, March 30 and Saturday, April 1.

Services affected include those heavily relied on by London commuters such as Southern, Southeastern, Southwestern Railway and Thameslink.

Trains that run start later and end much earlier than usual, usually between 7:30am and 6:30pm.

Nationally, between 40 and 50 percent of train services will operate, but there will be wide variations across the network, with some areas having no services at all.

Steve Montgomery, Chairman of Rail Delivery Group, said: “This latest round of strikes will be a further inconvenience to our customers who have already been experiencing disruptions for months, and cost our staff even more money when they can least afford it.

“They will also ask why the RMT leadership blocked the chance to resolve this dispute by refusing to give its members – many of whom would have benefited from a 13 per cent increase – a say in their own deal.

“While we will be pulling out all the stops to keep as many trains running as possible, unfortunately there will be limited services across many parts of the rail network throughout all four days of the strike, so we recommend checking before travelling.”

But RMT General Secretary Mick Lynch said: “Railway employers are not being given a new mandate by the government to offer our members a new deal on pay, conditions and job security.

“Therefore, our members will now take sustained and targeted industrial action in the coming months. The government can easily settle this dispute by unleashing the railway companies.

“However, his stubborn refusal to do so will now mean more strikes across the rail network and a very disruptive overtime ban.”

A Department of Transport spokesman called on the union to make the industry’s “very fair offer” to its members.

Teachers in England and university staff will also go on strike in a continuation of Wednesday’s action.

Up to half a million teachers, lecturers, residents, civil servants, London Tube drivers, BBC journalists and Amazon employees walked out on Budget Day.

Union officials, speaking at a rally in London attended by tens of thousands of strikers and supporters, said the strike had sent a strong signal to the government about its handling of the dispute. London commuters were hit by fresh strikes as National Rail pulled out

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