Tube strike 2014: London Underground enters last-minute talks with RMT in bid to stop walkout

Cameron criticises industrial action as Transport for London enters eleventh-hour talks with rail union bosses to avert commuter chaos

Transport for London (TfL) will engage in last-minute talks with rail union bosses tomorrow morning in a bid to call off the planned 48-hour tube strike.

David Cameron has called the walkout “unjustified and unacceptable” as millions of commuters brace themselves for two days of transport chaos.

Speaking to the Evening Standard, the Prime Minister called on members of the Rail, Maritime and Transport workers’ union (RMT) to call off the 48-hour strike, which begins tomorrow at 9pm.

He said the walkout organised by workers on the London Underground would “hit millions of hard-working families across the capital and cause chaos for businesses” and urged Labour leader Ed Miliband to “make it clear that he condemns this strike without reservation”.

Mayor of London Boris Johnson agreed with the Prime Minister, adding that the RMT treats its passengers with “contempt”.

“Its leadership is demonstrating once again its utter contempt for commuters and business alike”, he said.

The strikes were called after eight weeks of talks aimed at resolving the row over plans to close manned ticket offices broke down earlier this month.

The union claims that Transport for London’s (TfL) modernisation plans, which would see 953 station jobs cut, risks safety and will damage the quality of service.

But TfL believe that the plans can be achieved without compulsory redundancies or any loss of pay to workers. They also promise stations would remained staffed at all times.

 

Mayor of London Boris Johnson told the Evening Standard: “No one will be forced out of a job, no one will lose pay. Fewer than three per cent of journeys start at a ticket office, at a cost of £50 million. By saving that we can help keep fares down”.

Ed Miliband has criticised the strikes as “wrong”, but laid responsibility on both sides.

And an RMT spokesman has said it hopes the strikes will lead them to engage in “meaningful and serious talks”.

The last strike in February brought the network, which is used by three million people most days, to a virtual standstill. After next week’s 48-hour strike, RMT are planning another three-day walkout from May 5.

Read more:Which lines and stations will be affected by the walk-out?
 
Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
ebooks
ebooksA special investigation by Andy McSmith
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: Graphic Designer

£25000 - £35000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A great opportunity has arisen ...

Recruitment Genius: Telesales Executive - OTE £38,000

£16000 - £38000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is an exciting opportunity...

Recruitment Genius: Parts Sales Advisor - OTE 18k-23k

£18000 - £23000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: One of Ford's leading Parts Who...

SThree: Recruitment Resourcer

£20000 - £25000 per annum + Uncapped Commission: SThree: Do you want to learn ...

Day In a Page

Revealed: Why Mohammed Emwazi chose the 'safe option' of fighting for Isis, rather than following his friends to al-Shabaab in Somalia

Why Mohammed Emwazi chose Isis

His friends were betrayed and killed by al-Shabaab
'The solution can never be to impassively watch on while desperate people drown'
An open letter to David Cameron: Building fortress Europe has had deadly results

Open letter to David Cameron

Building the walls of fortress Europe has had deadly results
Tory candidates' tweets not as 'spontaneous' as they seem - you don't say!

You don't say!

Tory candidates' election tweets not as 'spontaneous' as they appear
Mubi: Netflix for people who want to stop just watching trash

So what is Mubi?

Netflix for people who want to stop just watching trash all the time
The impossible job: how to follow Kevin Spacey?

The hardest job in theatre?

How to follow Kevin Spacey
Armenian genocide: To continue to deny the truth of this mass human cruelty is close to a criminal lie

Armenian genocide and the 'good Turks'

To continue to deny the truth of this mass human cruelty is close to a criminal lie
Lou Reed: The truth about the singer's upbringing beyond the biographers' and memoirists' myths

'Lou needed care, but what he got was ECT'

The truth about the singer's upbringing beyond
Migrant boat disaster: This human tragedy has been brewing for four years and EU states can't say they were not warned

This human tragedy has been brewing for years

EU states can't say they were not warned
Women's sportswear: From tackling a marathon to a jog in the park, the right kit can help

Women's sportswear

From tackling a marathon to a jog in the park, the right kit can help
Hillary Clinton's outfits will be as important as her policies in her presidential bid

Clinton's clothes

Like it or not, her outfits will be as important as her policies
NHS struggling to monitor the safety and efficacy of its services outsourced to private providers

Who's monitoring the outsourced NHS services?

A report finds that private firms are not being properly assessed for their quality of care
Zac Goldsmith: 'I'll trigger a by-election over Heathrow'

Zac Goldsmith: 'I'll trigger a by-election over Heathrow'

The Tory MP said he did not want to stand again unless his party's manifesto ruled out a third runway. But he's doing so. Watch this space
How do Greek voters feel about Syriza's backtracking on its anti-austerity pledge?

How do Greeks feel about Syriza?

Five voters from different backgrounds tell us what they expect from Syriza's charismatic leader Alexis Tsipras
From Iraq to Libya and Syria: The wars that come back to haunt us

The wars that come back to haunt us

David Cameron should not escape blame for his role in conflicts that are still raging, argues Patrick Cockburn
Sam Baker and Lauren Laverne: Too busy to surf? Head to The Pool

Too busy to surf? Head to The Pool

A new website is trying to declutter the internet to help busy women. Holly Williams meets the founders