09 June 2009. The Mayor and Transport for London have unveiled a raft of extra services as part of a major effort to help Londoners and commuters get around the capital, if a planned 48 hour tube strike goes ahead this week.
Plans include extra buses, access to all Greater London National Rail services with Oyster pay as you go, taxi sharing at major rail stations, escorted commuter cycle rides, additional cycle parking and a free River shuttle service.
The Rail, Maritime and Transport (RMT) union has called its members out for 48 hours from 1859 on Tuesday 9 June to 1858 on Thursday 11 June. Normal services would resume on the morning of Friday 12 June.
The Mayor of London, Boris Johnson, said: “I am determined to do as much as is humanly possible to ease the journeys of the millions of Londoners whose lives may be disrupted if strike action takes place. The plans we are setting out call for a team effort over the next few days by everyone in this great city to ensure we keep the capital running.
“The myriad of organisations and individuals that have already agreed to lay on free services, lead cycle rides, drive extra services and marshal shared taxi ranks exemplifies the united approach we will need. Londoners can be assured a tremendous amount is being done to keep them moving if a strike does happen.”
Londoners and commuters are being advised to make absolutely certain they plan ahead and check before they travel should the strike go ahead. All the latest travel info and details of alternative travel options will be available via www.tfl.gov.uk and London media bulletins. The impact on Tube services is likely to be significant, but TfL has prepared plans to keep London moving and is urging everyone travelling in London on strike days to consider the range of travel options including walking and cycling and to stagger normal journeys where possible.
Transport Commissioner Peter Hendy said: “We continue to make every effort to reach an agreement with our unions and have made further substantive assurances on jobs as well as a revised pay offer.
“We regret the disruption the strike will cause if it goes ahead as the impact on Tube services is likely to be significant. However the Mayor and TfL have prepared plans to keep London moving and thousands of TfL staff will be on hand across the city help our passengers.
“A massive effort is being made including boosting bus and river services, providing escorted commuter cycle rides and more central London cycle parking and distributing thousands of walking maps at central London rail and Tube stations. Oyster Pay As You Go will also be accepted all National Rail services within Greater London and there will be marshaled taxi sharing facilities at six major rail stations.
“We urge everyone travelling in and around London during the strike to check before you travel and to consider the wide range of alternative travel options by going on-line to tfl.gov.uk as well as staggering your normal journeys where possible.”
Over the two main days of the strike, TfL staff will be on hand across the bus network and at Tube stations to offer travel advice and will be distributing walking maps in central London. Those bus drivers and other public transport workers who are on duty will be doing their very best to keep London moving and passengers’ patience is asked for over what may be difficult journeys.
Tube – The RMT leadership plan a strike from 1859hrs on Tuesday 9 June to 1858hrs Thursday 11 June with normal services resuming on the morning of Friday 12 June. Customers using the Underground on the Tuesday evening are advised to finish their journeys by 1900hrs to ensure they get home, as services are likely to decline after this time.
Buses – London buses operate around 700 routes with services being boosted by up to 100 extra buses on key routes on strike days.
National Rail – Oyster Pay As You Go will be accepted on all National Rail journeys within Greater London on Wednesday and Thursday, just show your Oyster card at station gate lines.
Taxis – during the morning peak hours of 0800-1030, taxi drivers will be operating a marshalled, fixed-fare shared taxi service for central London destinations at six major London rail termini – Waterloo, Liverpool St, London Bridge, Marylebone, Paddington and Euston.
DLR and London Overground – services will be operating as normal.
Roads and the Congestion Charge – to help keep traffic flowing the Congestion Charge will remain in operation through-out the strike and TfL will be suspending road works on major London roads wherever possible. Where possible, Londoners and commuters are encouraged to consider alternatives to the car.
Cycling – additional options for cyclists will include morning commuter led cycle rides, temporary parking facilities and thousands of cycle maps will be distributed across London.
Led commuter rides – The London Cycle Campaign will be leading five escorted rides into Central London with TfL volunteers at start points to provide maps, refreshments and guidance, further details available at www.biketube.org.uk All rides will set off from 0745 from the bolded locations:
Finsbury Park main gate – Arsenal – Liverpool Road (Islington) – Angel – Moorgate – Mansion House – London Bridge – City Hall
Mile End Green Bridge – Stepney Green – Cable Street – Tower Hill – Bank
Ravenscourt Park – Hammersmith – High Street Kensington – Hyde Park – Charing Cross – Trafalgar Square
Brixton Road (KFC) – Oval – Elephant and Castle – Blackfriars
Swiss Cottage – Hampstead – Belsize Park – Chalk Farm – Mornington Crescent – Euston – Gower Street – Tavistock Place – Gray’s Inn Road – Clerkenwell – Farringdon – Moorgate
Cycle Parking – In addition to the major cycle park at Finsbury Park and existing racks at major London stations across the city, another 1000 cycle parking spaces will be provided at London Bridge cycle park and temporary cycle parking facilities at the locations and times below. Many London businesses will also be opening up their foyers and parking facilities for their staff.
• Trafalgar Square: 150 spaces (0600-2100 on Weds and Thurs)
• Potters Field, accessed via Weavers Lane: 100 spaces (open access from Tuesday evening, with racks removed at 2100 on Thurs)
• Waterloo Bus Garage, accessed only via Cornwall Road off The Cut, approach via Sandell Street: 150 spaces (0800-1730 on Weds and Thurs – closing strictly at 1730)
• London Bridge Cycle Park: 350 spaces (0730-2130 on Tues, Weds and Thurs)
• The Mall, between Marlborough Road and George IV statue/ Queen Mother memorial – 250 spaces (open access from Tuesday evening, with racks removed at 2100 on Thurs)
Walking – if you are considering making or completing your journeys by foot, check www.tfl.gov.uk for information or, in central London on strike days, pick up a free local vicinity walking map from staff at major rail stations, bus stations and key tube stations.
River – existing services will be boosted from a capacity of 1,500 to 8,000 an hour and including an additional free shuttle service from London Bridge to Tower Bridge:
Greenwich-Canary Wharf-Central London: normal Clippers service with enhancements;
Putney-Central London: normal Thames Executive Charter (TEC) service with four boats instead of two;
London Eye – Westminster – Tower Bridge – free peak shuttle every 10 minutes between 0700-1000 and 1500-2000 on both main strike days