Rail workers plan Christmas chaos

Most of us will have already endured travel chaos thanks to the snow but if you are planning to travel during the Christmas period, you could be in for more misery.

London Underground sign
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A series of strikes by train drivers looks set to ruin many a seasonal getaway, with London Underground drivers planning a Boxing Day walkout and some network rail services set to strike on December 23.

The strike by Underground drivers will play havoc with shoppers planning a Boxing Day sales raid while London Midland drivers are likely to ruin travel plans for thousands.

And Arriva Trains Wales drivers have also voted to take action over a pay dispute.

Tube drivers, who are also members of Aslef, are hoping for triple pay and a day off in lieu for working Boxing Day, contrary to the "long-standing deal" Transport for London says is already in place.

And London Midland drivers are aiming to close pay gaps, some of up to £1,200, between Silverlink and Central Trains drivers, both of which used to work on the network.

Aslef general secretary Keith Norman told the Daily Mail: "It is painfully obvious to any reasonable person that Boxing Day is not an ordinary working day and therefore it is no surprise that Aslef members have reacted in this way."

But a spokesman for Transport for London branded the strikes "disgraceful".

"London Underground has a long-standing agreement with all of its trade unions which cover staff working arrangements on bank holidays, and Boxing Day is included in that agreement.

"London Underground has made every effort to resolve this issue with Aslef leadership, which has refused to attend talks at Acas to discuss its claim."

Yet again, though, it's the general public who will suffer and the strike by London Midland could leave thousands struggling to get home for Christmas.

Will you be affected by the planned rail strikes and what do you think of their demands? Leave your comments below...