London bus drivers set to strike on same days as Tube and rail workers

London faces further transport chaos this month after bus drivers voted to strike alongside underground and railway workers.

Unite members employed by London United will stand down on August 19 and 20 in a row to discuss pay and working conditions.

The bus strike affects areas of south and west London.

The union said the strike was the result of the company’s offer of a 3.6% pay rise in 2022 and 4.2% next year, which it described as a salary reduction in real terms due to the surge in the rate of inflation.

Sharon Graham, Unite’s General Secretary, said: “The RATP parent company is fabulously wealthy and can fully afford to pay our members a decent pay rise.

She added that Unite members play a “crucial role” in London transport and will not stand to see their pay continually eroded.

“Unite does what it says on the union tin and always stands up for the jobs, wages and conditions of its members,” Ms Graham said.

“Our London United members will receive the full support of the union until this dispute is resolved and a fair pay offer is secured.”

On Friday, it was announced that workers at the Port of Felixstowe had agreed to strike for eight days later this month.

The Unite members will walk out on August 21 after talks at the Acas Conciliation Service failed to resolve the dispute.

Unite said more than 1,900 workers at Felixstowe, the country’s largest container port, will take industrial action.

The strike was called after Unite said the Felixstowe Dock and Railway Company had failed to improve its offer of a 7% pay rise, describing it as “significantly below” inflation.

Relations between unions and company bosses have deteriorated in recent months under the threat of a strike.

Transport Secretary Grant Shapps in June accused unions of pursuing “a kind of class warfare” and said in late July they were exploiting “archaic 1919 rules” to discourage staff from working on Sundays.

Unions have repeatedly accused the government and rail companies of lying about stalled negotiations and informal strike claims.

The threat of walkouts also hangs over other parts of the UK transport sector, from airlines to container ports.

Updated: August 05, 2022, 7:56 p.m.

Bonny J. Streater