French strike chaos to hit Eurotunnel

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CROSS-CHANNEL tourists and lorry drivers were bracing themselves last night as French port workers prepared to block ferries and Eurotunnel trains going in and out of France.

Staff at Calais, the busiest Channel port, are taking action today in protest at the threatened end of duty-free.

A spokesman for P&O Stena Line said the action against ferries was to begin at 8am (GMT) and scheduled to last for six hours. "As usual, it is the British passenger who has to bear the brunt of a protest like this," he said. Eurotunnel said it was advising people not to travel.

Kent Police warned yesterday that a section of the M20 could be shut to accommodate queuing lorries waiting to cross.

Inspector Peter Savage of Kent Police said the motorway would be closed for as long as the queues lasted. "We hope the dispute does not last all day, but we have to be prepared to cope ... for as long as it takes."