November tube strike: Everything you need to know about Piccadilly, Central and Waterloo and City line walkouts

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Next week staff on the Piccadilly, Central and Waterloo & City lines will stage a coordinated strike, disrupting hundreds of thousands of commuter journeys across the capital.

The National Union of Rail, Maritime and Transport Workers (RMT) has said workers are walking out following a breakdown in industrial relations.

Here’s everything you need to know.

When is the tube strike?

Wednesday 7 and Thursday 8 November. The Central and Waterloo & City lines will have very limited or no service throughout the day on 7 November, with normal services resuming the next day.

The Piccadilly line will have limited or no service from approximately 2pm on 7 November until approximately 3pm on 8 November; a good service is expected to resume by 4pm.

What is TfL saying about the strike?

TfL is advising people to use alternative routes on tube, rail and bus services throughout the strikes. Walking is also encouraged where possible – TfL’s tube walking map shows average walking times between stations in zones 1-3.

If the strikes go ahead, as many trains as possible will be running. 

Holborn station is expected to be closed for the duration, while interchange stations along the Piccadilly, Central and Waterloo & City lines will be much busier than usual.

These stations are expected to be particularly busy during the morning and afternoon peaks and at times may need to close temporarily to prevent overcrowding: Stratford, Finsbury Park, Hammersmith, King’s Cross St Pancras, Warren Street, Green Park, Bond Street, Piccadilly Circus, Tottenham Court Road, Bank, Liverpool Street, Woodford, Mile End, Leytonstone, White City, Ealing Broadway, Oxford Circus and Notting Hill Gate.

Services on other lines will run normally, but are likely to be busier than usual.

Will buses be running during the strike? 

Extra buses will be running during the strikes. Buses are likely to be busy – TfL recommends allowing more time for your journey.

How can I get to Heathrow airport during the strike?

On Wednesday 7 November, the last Piccadilly line train from Cockfosters to Terminal 4 departs at 12.41pm, arriving at 1.45pm. The last train to depart from Cockfosters to Terminal 5 departs at 12.59pm, arriving at 2.01pm.

During the strike, passengers for Heathrow are advised to use TfL Rail and Heathrow Express services to and from Paddington station. The TfL Rail service is approximately every 30 minutes and takes 35 minutes.

These services are likely to be busy – customers are advised to buy tickets in advance to avoid delays. London Underground tickets and Oyster are not valid on Heathrow Express services.

The A4/M4 motorway route to Heathrow is also expected to be busier than usual.

Can I use my tube ticket on other services?

Buses, DLR, London Overground and TfL Rail will accept tube single and return tickets and National Rail cross-London tickets on reasonable alternative routes.

TfL Rail will accept single and return tube tickets between Paddington and Heathrow.

Southwestern Railway will accept single and return tube tickets between Waterloo and Feltham via Hounslow or Richmond.


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Thameslink will accept printed tube tickets between King’s Cross – Finsbury Park and New Southgate – New Barnet.

Great Northern will accept printed tube tickets on the route between Highbury & Islington – Palmers Green.

Travelcards will be accepted on other services as usual (within the zones of the tickets).

Pay as you go users will be charged the fare for the services used.

Can I get any money back?

Refunds will generally not be made, although customer services will consider any requests.

Why is the strike happening?

RMT cites a breakdown in industrial relations and abuse of procedures as the cause behind the proposed strikes.

General secretary Mick Cash said: “Industrial relations along the Central Line have been at breaking point for some time now and the failure of the management to address the issues, and a conscious decision to up the ante by attempting to single out and pick off individual members of staff, has tipped the situation over the edge and has led to the announcement of strike action.

“There is a growing culture on London Underground that revolves around refusing to employ enough drivers, bullying staff and expecting our members to pick up the pieces when the service breaks down. RMT members on the Central Line have made it clear that they have had enough and are prepared to stand up and fight for workplace respect and justice.

“Tube bosses are well aware of the level of anger on the job and it’s down to the them to take the situation seriously and engage in genuine talks around reaching a solution to the current disputes.”

Visit the TfL website and follow its Twitter accounts for up-to-date information on the day

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