London commuters face ANOTHER gruelling journey to work amid strike

Tube chaos will continue until 8am: Commuters face ANOTHER gruelling journey to work as militant union shuts down London Underground for start of rush hour

  • Fed-up Londoners will have to take much longer routes by bus or splash out on taxis and Ubers this morning
  • Rail, Maritime and Transport union (RMT) members are walking due to a dispute over jobs and pensions
  • No10 have condemned the ‘deeply disappointing’ strike, which has caused misery for millions of commuters 
  • Have you faced chaos on your commute? Email [email protected] 
  • Latest Platinum Jubilee news as the Queen celebrates 70 years of service

Commuters are facing another gruelling journey to work across London this morning as some 4,000 Tube workers continue their strike until 8am – with services likely to be affected for much of the day as they try to recover. 

Fed-up Londoners will have to take much longer routes by bus or splash out on taxis and Ubers, likely adding to the capital’s traffic and pollution levels. 

The strike action has been ordered by the militant Rail, Maritime and Transport union (RMT) due to an ongoing dispute over jobs and pensions. They believe up to 600 jobs and their pension scheme are under threat from a cash-strapped Transport for London (TfL), which a union leader yesterday claimed is ‘bankrupt’ and in need of £500m by March next year.

The RMT is also expected to reveal its dates for national railway walkouts today, which threaten to see Network Rail forced to operate on a skeleton timetable this summer to reserve tracks for the movement of goods – with passengers only having access to key services.

Have you faced chaos on your commute?

Email: [email protected] 

Downing Street yesterday condemned the ‘deeply disappointing’ strike, which caused misery for millions of commuters as they tried to return to their desks following the four-day Platinum Jubilee weekend. 

Police were pictured dealing with furious workers as they were forced to battle to get on buses and struggle through busier roads.

London Tube strikes: What is the walkout over? When does it end? What are the unions demanding? 

Around 4,000 Tube workers have gone on strike today, bringing London to a standstill. 

They are being led by the Rail, Maritime and Transport union (RMT), following two 24-hour strikes in early March over the same issues. 

It is just one in what threatens to be a series of strikes over the coming months, in what some are already branding a potential ‘summer of discontent’ – with a national rail strike and mass civil servant walkouts also on the cards. 

What is today’s Tube walkout over?

RMT fears that cash-strapped Transport for London (TfL) is planning to cut jobs and alter its workers’ current pension scheme. 

It comes after an independent review ordered by London Mayor Sadiq Khan before the Covid pandemic found that making changes to the pension plan could save £100million per year. 

TfL also announced that it would not be filling up to 600 station jobs that become vacant due to retirement or staff leaving. 

The walkout is not over pay. London Underground workers received an 8.4 per cent salary increase in April as part of a four-year deal. 

How long will it last? 

The current strike is from Monday until Tuesday at 8am. 

However the effects of the strike action could last for much of Tuesday as services try to recover. 

Further action could be taken this month or in the coming weeks if an agreement is not reached. 

However Sadiq Khan’s office did offer RMT a meeting at the weekend, but the union refused to meet until after the strike action had taken place.

What does RMT want? 

RMT is demanding a face to face meeting with Mayor Khan to ‘sort this mess out’. 

It also wants a guarantee of no more job cuts or alterations to the pension plan. 

A spokesperson for the mayor’s office today insisted that ‘no changes to pensions are yet proposed’, and that ‘no station staff will be losing their jobs.’ 

Which Tube services are affected? 

Victoria, Waterloo & City and Circle lines are closed entirely, while majority of others have very limited services. 

There is a good service on Metropolitan and Elizabeth lines, the DLR and Tram. 

Meanwhile, those who had to take an Uber to work compared it to the ‘Hunger Games’, with some reporting waiting up to one-and-a-half hours for a driver. Others complained of a surge in prices and ‘shambolic’ traffic. 

RMT leader Mick Lynch ‘congratulated’ its members on Monday and warned that they ‘will not rest’ until a ‘just’ agreement is reached. 

And this week’s action could just be the start of a feared ‘summer of discontent’, with the upcoming national rail strike threatening to wreak havoc on services. 

Civil servants have also threatened national strike action that could bring disruption to key infrastructure such as ports, courts and airports, after being offered a 2 per cent pay rise, which they deemed as insufficient amid the ongoing cost of living crisis that is currently causing inflation levels of 9 per cent. 

‘This sort of action is deeply disappointing and not what the public want to see, not what we want to see for businesses still trying to recover post-pandemic, people’s lives being disrupted in London,’ the Prime Minister’s official spokesman said Monday.

‘Obviously industrial relations at TfL (Transport for London) are a matter for TfL and the mayor but it’s clear that under the current funding settlement TfL must take all reasonable steps to avoid industrial action.’

TfL today is warning that all Tube lines are suspended until at least 8am. 

Other TfL services, including the Elizabeth Line, DLR, London Overground and Trams, are not affected by the industrial action and will be running but will be busier. 

Some commuters took to social media to blast the strikes, with one declaring: ‘We are in hell’, while others said they had simply ‘had enough’ of being ‘held to ransom’ by militant unions. 

In response to RMT’s complaints, TfL said no proposals have been tabled on pensions or terms and conditions, and vowed that nobody will lose their jobs because of the proposals it has set out.

It emerged today that TfL and RMT met at conciliation service Acas last week, and that Mayor Sadiq Khan’s office had offered to meet with the union over the weekend – one of their main demands. 

However a spokesperson for the Mayor’s office said RMT did not want to meet until after the strike, adding: ‘No changes to pensions are yet proposed, no station staff will be losing their jobs, let alone the ‘hundreds of thousands’ of jobs.

‘Under current cost saving plans required by the government financial deal conditions there will be a reduction in 600 roles once staff leave or retire.’

As part of previous funding agreements, the Government has required TfL to work towards achieving financial sustainability on its operations by April 2023.

TfL has proposed not recruiting into around 500 to 600 posts as they become vacant.

Today’s strike comes after London Underground workers receiving an 8.4 per cent pay rise in April. 

While inflation is currently at 9 per cent, a four-year deal with unions guarantees 15,000 Tube workers an annual pay increase of RPI+0.2%, costing TfL £100m, reports the BBC. 

Meanwhile NHS workers and teachers are seeing their spending power at lows not seen for 20 years, as pay struggles to keep up with the soaring cost of living.  

The annual wage of a full time Tube driver was £56,496 in the year up to March 2020, the Sun previously reported.

This is on top of other perks the drivers enjoy such as free travel around the capital for them and a partner.  

They can also retire on a reduced pension at the age of 50 or a full pension at 60.

Commuter Sally Johnson, who works in Waterloo said Monday: ‘I’m just totally confused and haven’t got a clue as to what’s going on. Mind you, neither has anybody else and that includes the Government.

‘We’ve been told that some lines are completely closed, and others are running a restricted service, but the bottom line is, my normal one-hour commute is now going to take much longer.’

She added: ‘I’m going to get a bus into Central London, which will take ages and then will probably hire a bike or might even walk. I can’t face getting onto a packed bus.’

Cleaner Maria Dos Santos, who was travelling into the City from her home in Northolt said: ‘I’ve managed to get the Tube for part of the way, now I’m waiting for a bus and then I don’t know what I’ll be doing. I haven’t worked it out yet.

Leicester Square station shut on Tuesday morning amid the strike action organised by the RMT union 

‘No trains on the District Line’: Sign tells commuters there are no services until at least 7am on Tuesday morning 

Tube misery on Tuesday morning as commuters were caught out by the strike, which ends at 8am 

Commuters outside Southfields Station in London, wait for London Underground services to resume this morning following the Rail, Maritime and Transport (RMT) union’s strike across the network

Pictures showed Londoners forming snaking queues at bus stops under grey skies and rain on Monday evening in a desperate bid to squeeze onto the rammed mode of public transport

Elsewhere commuters arrived at underground stations to find them still shuttered, with strike action set to continue until Tuesday at 8am


Commuters queue for buses as the tubes go on a post Jubilee weekend strike

Many took to Twitter to vent their frustration, with one user writing: ‘This tube strike has to be the most frustrating thing ever’

Confused and irate commuters seek advice at Euston underground station on Monday morning 

Downing Street has condemned the ‘deeply disappointing’ strike, which has caused misery for millions of commuters as they try to return to their desks following the four-day Platinum Jubilee weekend

Police officers advise commuters as they get caught out by Tube station closures caused by strike action on Monday morning 

Chaotic scenes at Liverpool Street station on Monday morning amid the RMT backed strike action 

Long queues formed outside bus stops across the capital on Monday morning as most Tube stations remained closed 

Pictured: Traffic builds up on the Blackwall Tunnel Road as  commuters face no choice but to find alternative means of transport to the Tube network

Commuters struggling to get to work this morning at London Victoria Station as they queue for buses and taxis

Commuters queue for buses as the tubes go on a post Jubilee weekend strike

‘This is not a good start to the week after we all had a great few days off.’

Toby Grant, who works in clothes shop in the West End said: ‘I normally get the Piccadilly Line but now I’m going to have to get buses all the way to work. The traffic is already horrendous, and I don’t know how long it will take me.

‘It’s been a nightmare start to the week. The buses are packed, it’s hard to get onto one and the weather is not helping.’

Raj Sahota, who was trying to get to Green Park for a meeting said: ‘I think it’s going to take me at least two to three hours and will involve getting a mixture of buses and overland trains, so I’ve set off extra early.

He added: ‘The airports are a disaster and now the Tube has just added to the travel chaos. Everyone is in a very bad mood and stressed. It’s not fair that people are being treated this way because we just want to get on with our lives.’

Traffic expert at TomTom also criticised the strikes for having ‘grim repercussions’ on London’s air quality as hoards of would-be rail users opted for cars. 

RMT general secretary Mick Lynch said in a statement yesterday: ‘I congratulate our station grade and revenue control staff members on London Underground for taking strike action in defence of their pensions and jobs.

‘The effectiveness and industrial power of these members cannot be underestimated.

‘TfL, London Underground Limited (LUL) and the Mayor of London have had ample opportunity to negotiate with the union properly to avert this strike action today.

‘Their intransigence and stubbornness have left RMT members no choice but to act decisively.

‘We will not rest until we have a just settlement to this dispute and we urge the Mayor to stand up to the Tory government who are cutting funding to TfL rather than try to pick a fight with tube workers.’

Andy Lord, TfL’s chief operating officer, said: ‘I’d like to apologise to London for the impact this strike will have on journeys.

‘We know it’s going to be damaging to London and the economy, at a time when public transport is playing a crucial role in the capital’s recovery.

Londoners queue for buses in the rain at Baker Street station amid travel chaos caused by Tube strikes 

Commuters wait at a bus stop outside Victoria train station in London on June 6, 2022, during a 24-hour strike

Commuters erect umbrellas and don face masks as they wait at a bus stop outside Victoria train station in London on Monday morning 

‘We are in hell’: Fuming commuters react to Tube strikes in central London this morning 

Summer of Discontent: Fears mount over a repeat of the infamous winter of 1978 as slew of strikes set for coming months 

Fears are mounting of a repeat of the 1978 ‘Winter of Discontent’ in which a slew of strikes by waste workers, gravediggers and lorry drivers resulted in squalid conditions for Brits under Labour PM Jim Callaghan. 

It comes as unions have threatened a national rail strike which could see Network Rail forced to operate on a skeleton timetable to reserve tracks for the movement of goods – with passengers only having access to key services.

Civil servants have also threatened national strike action that could bring disruption to key infrastructure such as ports, courts and airports, after being offered a 2 per cent pay rise, which they deemed as insufficient amid the ongoing cost of living crisis that is currently causing inflation levels of 9 per cent. 

The head of the Transport Salaried Staffs’ Association, Manuel Cortes, threatened the biggest disruption since the General Strike of 1926. 

Fears are mounting of a repeat of the 1978 ‘Winter of Discontent’ in which a slew of strikes led to squalid living conditions across Britain

But it is not only the railways that are set to be massively disrupted by strikes in the coming months.

Holidaymakers travelling through Heathrow this summer will have to prepare for delays and slower service, as the GMB Union is balloting for strikes to take place at the airport.

A number of British Airways ground staff and check-in desk workers have voted in favour of a strike that could cause chaos for travellers. 

The workers are demanding that a ten per cent cut – imposed during the pandemic – is reinstated in their pay packets.

Meanwhile, Unite union has said pay strikes at Exxon’s Fawley refinery, near Southampton, will escalate in June – risking petrol supply disruption at a sixth of the UK’s petrol stations.

Around 100 workers, equivalent to a third of the refinery’s contractors, took three days of strike action in April and May over a 2.5 per cent pay offer and a lack of sick pay.

Strikes were also scheduled across five dates in June.

Elsewhere, taxi drivers in Corby are threatening to strike over plans by North Northamptonshire Council to increase the maximum two-mile fair to £6.10, which the taxi drivers say will ‘erode trust’ among its client base. 

‘While our focus is always on helping everyone travel around London whenever they want, the expected impact of the RMT’s action means we have to advise people to only travel if necessary, as many stations may be closed.

‘Alternatives to the Tube, including the bus and rail networks, are likely to be much busier than usual and we expect the severe disruption caused by this strike to continue into the morning of Tuesday June 7.

‘No changes have been proposed to pensions and nobody has or will lose their job as a result of the proposals we have set out.

‘Working with us to find a resolution is the best course of action, avoiding the disruption this strike will cause to Londoners and the economy.’

The RMT said that, under current proposals, 600 jobs will be lost, working agreements will be torn up and the looming threat to pensions remains in place.

General secretary Mick Lynch said: ‘We are demanding a direct face to face meeting with mayor Sadiq Khan to sort this mess out.

‘There’s no point in our union continuing to sit opposite management representatives who have neither the inclination nor the authority to negotiate a settlement, when the power lies with the mayor.’

Richard Burge, chief executive of the London Chamber of Commerce said: ‘We are extremely disappointed that the RMT has called for a mass walkout by TfL workers in such close proximity to the Queen’s Jubilee Weekend when London will be full of visitors.

‘The last two years hit London disproportionately hard and the capital is desperately trying to claw back some sense of normality after a tumultuous two years.

‘This strike now puts TfL in a position of having to recommend that Londoners work from home.

‘Ultimately, this will only harm London’s economy and it is time for TfL to sort out their dispute with the RMT so we can get back to building prosperity and showing the world that London is open business.’

RMT members on the Tube are also taking action short of a strike, meaning station staff might not work overtime, until Sunday July 10, which may result in short notice station closures.

John Leach from the RMT Union described the situation on Monday as ‘pretty dire’, accusing TfL of being bankrupt and ‘living from one bailout to another with the government’, claiming that ‘they run out of money on June 24.’

Speaking to Vanessa Feltz on the BBC London Breakfast show, he said: ‘During the negotiations with the government, the mayor of London and his finance team are putting on the table the pension scheme, hundreds and hundreds of jobs, people’s terms of conditions of employment.

‘If you’re a station worker at Victoria which is where I am at the moment, they are facing a potential reduction of just under 50 per cent of all the staff. The rosters, the shift work that they do here, would catastrophically become worse. 

‘It’s bad enough anyway when you’re a shift worker, their pensions are also being put in jeopardy. At the moment they’re at a standard final salary pension scheme, that’s all being put off to be reviewed but TfL are frontloading that review by saying they have to save £400m a year off the scheme.’

He added: ‘The 600 station jobs they want to get rid of right now saves £25m a year, they’ve got to save £500m by next March – these figures are astronomical. We’re not making them up, they are figures they’ve given us themselves.’ 

He called on London Mayor Sadiq Khan to do a ‘proper deal’ with the government ‘stand up for your staff.’ 

It comes after the RMT last month threatened to extend a wave of rail strikes this summer into next year – as British Airways staff, hospital cleaners, refuse collectors and lorry drivers are also set to walk out in the coming months. 

Commuters wait to board a bus at Victoria Station in central London where strike action by 4,000 station staff has closed most stations

The disruption will last until 8am on Tuesday with commuters facing chaos on the return to work after the four-day Platinum Jubilee weekend

Warwick Avenue station pictured closed on Monday morning due to strike action

The union fears that spending cuts will lead to hundreds of job losses and reductions in pensions and working conditions. 

However, TfL insists it hasn’t proposed any changes to pensions or terms and conditions, and described the action as ‘completely unnecessary’. 

RMT general secretary Mick Lynch said: ‘Sadiq Khan should be standing up to Tory ministers who want to needlessly attack jobs, pensions and conditions of key transport workers.

‘It is this political failure that has left Tube workers with no choice but to strike this week.

‘Our members have been left paying the price for a turf war between City Hall and the government and they are not having it, as can be seen right across London today.’

Drivers can earn £24,000 while on a 12-16 week training course, which can then rise to £30,000 after completing assessments.

The salary for a newly qualified driver is around £49,000 but those with five years experience can pocket an extra £11,000 on top. 

In the financial year from April 1, 2019 to March 31, 2020, the annual wage of a full time driver was £56,496, the Sun reports.

This is on top of other perks the drivers enjoy such as free travel around the capital for them and a partner.  

They can retire on a reduced pension at the age of 50 or a full pension at 60.

It comes as Britons already having to contend with a cost-of-living crisis that has seen spiralling inflation soar to its highest level for 40 years, along with rising petrol prices and household bills.

But RMT leader Mick Lynch warned that the mass disruption could extend into into 2023 if the dispute over pay and proposed job losses is not resolved.

Asked if the walkouts could go ahead into the winter, he previously told TalkTV: ‘If there’s no settlement, then it will. All disputes have to end in a settlement and we are ready to negotiate that with those employers. 

‘The government’s hand is behind this. The companies are delivering government policy and like every public sector worker they want to clamp down on pay. 

‘The reason they want do that is they want to restore profit, they want to boost dividends for the private operators and that is true right across the economy in my view.’

He added: ‘We haven’t got a prescribed timetable. What we will do is put some action on, if that is what is needed, and we’d invite the companies to negotiate with us. 

‘We don’t want to go on strike and we don’t want to disrupt the summer. What we want is a negotiated settlement.’

It comes amid fears of power blackouts, petrol shortages and empty shelves if strike action goes ahead.

At least four in five services could be cancelled after RMT voted overwhelmingly in support for summer walkouts on May 24.

Freight trains supplying critical power plants could be severely disrupted, hitting electricity feeds to millions of homes.

The TSSA union is also involved in the dispute. Its boss, Manuel Cortes, warned in late May of a ‘summer of discontent’ that could be the biggest walkout since the 1926 General Strike. 

But it is not only the railways that are set to be massively disrupted by strikes in the coming months.

Holidaymakers travelling through Heathrow this summer will have to prepare for delays and slower service, as the GMB Union is balloting for strikes to take place at the airport.

A number of British Airways ground staff and check-in desk workers have voted in favour of a strike that could cause chaos for travellers. 

The workers are demanding that a ten per cent cut – imposed during the pandemic – is reinstated in their pay packets.

Dates for the strike action are yet to be confirmed, but the GMB union has confirmed that it will ‘take place during the summer holiday period’. 

Nadine Houghton, GMB National Officer, previously said: ‘These workers are claiming back what they had robbed from them due to BA’s callous fire and rehire during the pandemic.

‘BA forced our members into pay cuts during the pandemic, when they had little workplace power to fight back.

‘Now our members are back at work and staff shortages are hammering the company – it is their time to claim back what is theirs.’

Meanwhile, Unite union has said pay strikes at Exxon’s Fawley refinery, near Southampton, will escalate in June – risking petrol supply disruption at a sixth of the UK’s petrol stations.

Around 100 workers, equivalent to a third of the refinery’s contractors, took three days of strike action in April and May over a 2.5 per cent pay offer and a lack of sick pay.

But new strikes have now been scheduled for across five dates in June.

The same union has also confirmed that HGV drivers it represents are set to stop delivering goods to almost 500 Co-ops across the country in a bid to secure better pay.

Around 330 workers employed by GXO, the logistics giant, vowed to take 40 days of strike action between May and August – meaning in-store shortages are almost certain.

Refuse collectors represented by GMB also threatened strike action that could cause major issues for the Isle of Wight Festival this month. 

The ballot saw members vote for action, which they said could begin on the island as early as June 13, with the festival scheduled to take place over the following weekend.

The workers are in dispute with their employer Amey over pay. 

It comes after Inflation has already soared to its highest level for 40 years, at 9 per cent in April, due to eye-watering increases in energy tariffs, and is forecast to reach double-figures by the end of the year before falling back.

The Office for National Statistics (ONS) said government borrowing, excluding state-owned banks, stood at £18.6billion in April – lower than forecast and down by £5.6billion from a year ago.

Interest payments are also expected to soar, due to rocketing levels of the Retail Prices Index measure of inflation used on Government debt payments, with June data set to show the full scale of the recent jump in inflation.

Chancellor Rishi Sunak previously insisted that ‘countries around the world are dealing with rising inflation’, and that he ‘stands ready’ to offer further support to Britons – while stressing that he cannot ‘protect people completely’ from pain.

Disruption to the freight supply chain could lead to empty shelves in supermarkets in the UK

But experts warned that ‘this is what Stagflation looks like’, as the UK economy stalls and teeters towards recession after the pandemic and Ukraine war caused chaos.

Grant Shapps has previously said that the Government may bring in new laws to make strikes illegal unless a certain number of staff remain working to keep the UK’s railways running and London’s Underground network operational.

Mr Shapps said that Britain’s railways are already on ‘financial life support’ after two years of lockdowns and an ongoing battle to get people back into the office. 

He said that militant union leaders must ‘wake up and smell the coffee’.

Bu Mr Lynch responded: ‘TfL is trying to bulldoze through 600 job losses on London Underground and our members are not prepared to accept that.

‘Station staff play a crucial role in serving the travelling public and were heroes during the 7/7 terrorist attacks.

‘Instead of seeking to cut jobs, TfL and Mayor Sadiq Khan need to put further pressure on the government to secure increased funding for the network so we can have a properly staffed modern 21st century tube.’ 

‘Fat cat’ union bosses grinding London to a halt: RMT chiefs pocketing six-figure pay and benefits packages are behind 24-hour Tube strike causing misery for commuters 

The militant RMT union barons causing chaos for London commuters with a 24-hour strike include a Putin apologist and a Marxist who previously echoed Kremlin propaganda by describing Ukraine as being ‘held to ransom by neo-Nazis’.

Completing the ‘Lynch mob’ is union leader Mick Lynch, who once sighed ‘All I want from life is a bit of socialism’ – and now collects a salary of £84,174. 

Lynch – who claims up to 600 jobs up and the pension scheme are under threat from a cash-strapped Transport for London – today ‘congratulated’ union members and warned that they ‘will not rest’ until a ‘just’ agreement is reached.  

General Secretary Mick Lynch – who once sighed ‘All I want from life is a bit of socialism’ – collects a £84,174 salary

In March, Lynch organised the worst Tube strikes in five years – with two days of walkouts against changes to jobs, pensions and working conditions.

Lynch was once considered a centrist compared with former general secretary Bob Crow — but, after taking charge, he said: ‘The unions have got to make a militant stand – and use the strike weapon wherever it’s appropriate’.

He left school at 16 and trained as an electrician but was blacklisted due to union activity, so joined the railways.

Another high-ranking member of the RMT union is its senior assistant general secretary, Eddie Dempsey, a Putin apologist. He is on a package worth £108,549, consisting of a £78,282 gross salary, Employers’ NI contributions of £9,978 and pension contributions of £20,289. 

Dempsey shared glowing praise for Luhansk rebel Aleksey Mozgovoy in an obituary following his death in 2015, and even visited the Donbas region of Ukraine seven years ago, where he posed for a picture with the pro-Russian separatist commander.

Writing in far-right Russia Insider, Dempsey lavished praise on the ‘charismatic’ Mozgovoy, described the violent Luhansk separatists as communist ‘volunteers’, and brandished the West’s efforts to broker peace in the region as a ‘US-orchestrated coup’.

Labour MP Chris Bryant urged Dempsey to apologise after his links with Mozgovoy emerged earlier this year. 

RMT official Eddie Dempsey visiting Alexander Mozgovoy, a nationalist, misogynistic paramilitary leader in the pro-Russian militias during the war in eastern Ukraine

Dempsey addresses members of the United Voices of the World trade union outside the High Court in February 

Dempsey was also among the signatories of a Stop the War coalition statement last week that criticised NATO’s ‘disdain for Russian concerns’.

The statement caused a huge split within the Labour Party after 11 of its MPs backed it, before withdrawing their support after an intervention from Sir Keir Starmer. 

Left-wing parliamentarians who backed the statement were reportedly threatened with losing the whip, with one Labour frontbencher slamming the Stop the War Coalition as ‘Putin apologists’, the Telegraph reported. 

Another RMT fat cat who has been criticised for his comments over Ukraine is its president, Alex Gordon, a longstanding Marxist who has previously echoed the Kremlin’s propaganda by branding the country ‘a failed state held to ransom by neo-Nazis’. 

His pay and benefits package is not known.  

Following Moscow’s invasion of Crimea, the militant former train driver protested outside Ukraine’s embassy in London in 2015 while wearing the black and orange Ribbon of St George, a symbol of Russian military valour.

Gordon presides over the RMT’s ruling national executive committee. But he is also a major figure in the Communist Party of Britain, sitting on both its executive and political committees. 

Another RMT fat cat who has been criticised for his comments over Ukraine include its president, Alex Gordon, a longstanding Marxist who has previously echoed the Kremlin’s propaganda by branding the country ‘a failed state held to ransom by neo-Nazis’

The 55-year-old is also chairman of the Marx Memorial Library in North London, where Communist dictator Vladimir Lenin worked during his exile from Russia. 

The RMT has previously said: ‘The union has a clear policy of opposing the war in Ukraine and has called for the immediate withdrawal of Russian troops.’

On the issue of bosses’ pay, the RMT said: ‘The pay and benefits of RMT officials are decided on through our democratic structures and are ratified at the union’s Annual General Meeting in a wholly open and transparent process that every member has a right to comment on.

‘The employers National Insurance contributions should not be confused with earnings and the pension contributions are defined by the union’s pension scheme which all staff members belong to.’

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