Sales shoppers hit by London Underground strike

26th December 2010, Comments 0 comments

Drivers on London's Underground train system go on strike on Sunday, the day after Christmas, in a row over holiday pay that will hit shoppers heading to the sales.

Members of the ASLEF trade union voted in favour of the action after transport chiefs refused their demand for triple pay and a day off for working on December 26, which is a national holiday in Britain known as Boxing Day.

The walkout follows a series of Tube strikes by members of the RMT union in recent months over plans to axe 800 jobs in subway stations across the capital, which have caused misery for commuters.

The action will hit shoppers heading to the traditional Boxing Day sales, and means the underground network will have been closed for two days as it was also shut for Christmas on December 25.

Mike Brown, London Underground managing director, has accused the train drivers of "holding Londoners to ransom."

"The ASLEF leadership is tearing up long-standing agreements that cover pay and annual leave and demanding even more -- triple time and another day off," he said.

"Londoners will simply be stunned at such a claim."

ASLEF has claimed however that their bosses should not be treating Boxing Day as an "ordinary working day."

"The union argues that this is nonsense and insisted on generous premium rates for working on the day following Christmas Day," according to ASLEF.

© 2010 AFP

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