He left school at the age of 16 to work on the railways. He was the General Secretary of the RMT union for 12 years.
The leader of the biggest tube union has signalled new battles ahead as the Underground enters an unprecedented period of modernisation.
A tube strike which threatened to cause misery for millions of commuters was called off at the last minute today.
– Boris Johnson, Mayor of London
I'm pleased the TSSA and the RMT have agreed to call off their planned strike following talks with the conciliation service ACAS.
It means further unnecessary disruption to London and Londoners has been averted.
TfL's negotiators have been ready since November to discuss the detail around ticket office closures.
After two days of intensive and detailed discussions through the offices of ACAS we have now received proposals that halt the implementation of the job cuts set out in the HR1 document which gives us the opportunity to discuss all of the issues away from the pressure cooker.
We now have a golden opportunity to look again in detail at all of the concerns we have raised about the impact of the cuts on our members and the services that they provide to Londoners. That is exactly what we have been calling for throughout this dispute.
– Bob Crow, RMT Union
RMT is happy to discuss any issues with LU through the machinery of negotiation and we are glad that we have now got back to where we should have been right at the start of this process.
It is unfortunate that we were forced and provoked into a dispute that we never wanted and we are now in a position to move on with the clear understanding that our action is suspended but if there is any further attempt to impose change from above the action will go back on.
– Bob Crow, RMT Union
It is unfortunate that we were forced and provoked into a dispute that we never wanted.
The RMT union has also suspended a planned strike by its members on London Underground.
The TSSA union has deleted the tweet suggesting the RMT Union has also agreed to a deal.
The RMT union says it is still considering the new offer from London Underground. However, a tweet from the TSSA suggests it will also call off tonight's walk out.
We have now agreed a process where all our serious concerns over safety and job losses will be seriously addressed through the normal channels.
We are obviously pleased that we have agreed this process, which will allow us to suspend our strike immediately, and cancel it later when the agreement reaches us in a formal document.
RMT Union members are still due to walk out tonight, but are considering the offer from London Underground.