Schools have been closed, firefighters have been on strike and services at job centres, libraries and courts have all been affected in a day of industrial action by public sector workers.
Union members have been marching in places such as Peterborough, Northampton and Cambridge - however they've been criticised for causing inconvenience and the Government claims some unions didn't have a mandate for the action. Tanya Mercer reports from the west of the ITV Anglia region:
Another day of disruption across the region as public service workers staged their latest walkout in their long running dispute over pay and pensions. Schools have been closed, firefighters have been on strike and services at job centres, libraries and courts have all been affected.
Unions members say the strikes have been backed by almost all their members. But, in the increasingly bitter stand off, the Government claim some unions didn't have a mandate for the action. Malcolm Robertson reports on the strike in the east of the ITV Anglia region:
The Government says it is expecting most schools to open and most public sector workers to stay at work during Thursday's industrial action.
A spokesperson for the Cabinet Office said: “The vast majority of dedicated public sector workers did not vote for today’s action, and early indications are that most are turning up for work as usual.
“We have rigorous contingency plans in place, services appear to be working well. and we expect most schools and job centres to open their doors."
– Cabinet Office Spokesperson
“It is disappointing that, once again, some union leaders have pushed for strike action that will achieve nothing and benefit no one. Union leaders have relied on mandates for action that lack authority – the National Union of Teachers ballot was run nearly two years ago, while other ballots had extremely low turnouts.”
More than two hundred schools across the Anglia region were reported to be closed or partially closed by strike action early on Thursday.
Some teachers are joining other public sectors workers like firefighters, civil servants and bin collectors on a one-day strike over pay.
By 6.30am, more than 80 school in Norfolk were affected by the industrial action with 40 more in both Cambridgeshire and Suffolk. There were also school closures reported in Luton and Northamptonshire.