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New wave of strikes set to hit London's rail and tube

Rail and Tube workers will stage strikes over the Bank Holiday weekend in separate disputes over pay, jobs and conditions.

Credit: PA

RMT members at Heathrow Express will walk out for 24 hours from 3am on Friday, and again from the same time on Bank Holiday Monday. Unite union power control staff on London Underground will also strike for three days from Saturday in a dispute over pay and conditions.

Candidates to replace Bob Crow as RMT union boss

Five men have announced their intention to take over from Bob Crow as head of the Rail, Maritime and Transport union following the 52-year-old's sudden death.

Acting general secretary Mick Cash, closely involved in talks which prevented a 72-hour Tube strike, will stand as will London regional organiser John Leach.

Steve Hedley holding an assault rifle on his Facebook page. Credit: Facebook

The current assistant general secretary Steve Hedley, pictured holding an assault rifle on his Facebook page, is also among the candidates.

Other candidates include former union president Alex Gordon and Alan Pottage, the RMT's Edinburgh-based national organising co-ordinator.

Nominations for the job close in early July and the result will be announced in September.

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No Tube strike today

Londoners expecting to face the chaos of a Tube strike this morning can breathe a sigh of relief.

A last-ditch effort to avert the planned three-day strike was successful, with the announcement being made just hours before the industrial action was scheduled to begin.

London Underground bosses said yesteraday they are pleased with the result of the talks, but say more work is needed to resolve the disputes over the future of the Tube.

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London Underground 'pleased people will not endure strike'

London Underground and the Rail, Maritime and Transport union have welcomed the decision to suspend a three-day tube strike, which was due to start tonight at 9pm.

I am pleased that Londoners will not have to endure further strike action this week. The only way to resolve this dispute is for the RMT leadership to work with us to shape the future of the Tube in a changing world. It is good that they have committed to doing so alongside the three other unions involved.

– Phil Hufton, chief operating officer of London Underground

We have been able to secure real movement and significant progress on the issues at the heart of this dispute in talks with the Tube management over the bank holiday weekend.

– Mick Cash, acting RMT general secretary

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Last-ditch bid to avert Underground strike begins

The London Underground and Rail, Maritime and Transport are holding last-ditch talks just hours before a three day strike, that could affect millions of people across London and surrounding areas.

Conciliation service Acas said the talks between the RMT and London Underground started at 10am.

RMT union members are set to walk out of their jobs for three days at 9pm this evening, in a long-running dispute with the London Underground over ticket office closures.

A two-day strike last week caused huge disruption, with roads clogged as people switched to other forms of transport.

More: RMT: Cuts to 'safety-critical' Tube jobs led us to strike

Mayor claims London is being 'held to ransom' by RMT

London Mayor Boris Johnson at London Bridge Underground Station Credit: Press Association

London Mayor Boris Johnson claimed this evening that London is being 'held to ransom' by the RMT Union over next week's planned Tube strike.

His comments came as talks between London Underground and unions bosses finished today with the planned three day stoppage still on.

The Mayor said: said: "Once again London is being held to ransom by a minority of just one union, the RMT, who, unlike the other three unions, and on a ballot taken last November with just 30 per cent support, is digging in its heels and refusing to play its part in shaping the future of the Tube."

"Less than three per cent of journeys involve a visit to Victorian era ticket offices, which cost Londoners £50 million a year to run. It makes absolutely no sense to keep them open.

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