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Who is on strike today? Full list of train, teacher and bus strikes for this week and the rest of February

The i 01/02/2023 Alex Finnis
Members of the Public and Commercial Services union on the picket line outside the office of HM Treasury in Westminster on Wednesday (Photo: PA) © Provided by The i Members of the Public and Commercial Services union on the picket line outside the office of HM Treasury in Westminster on Wednesday (Photo: PA)

Hundreds of thousands of workers are on strike today in what is the biggest day of industrial action in more than a decade.

Teachers, train drivers, civil servants and university lecturers are among those walking out, with the action set to cost the UK hundreds of millions.

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Unions are battling for better pay for their members amid the cost of living crisis, with inflation now around 10 per cent.

Here is a full list of strikes taking place today, broken down by industry, and all the action planned for the rest of the month and beyond.

Who is on strike today?

Train drivers

Train drivers represented by the Aslef union are on strike on Wednesday 1 and Friday 3 February.

The action is likely to bring much of the railway network to a standstill. The following operators have confirmed they will be running no services on either day:

The following operators will be running a reduced service:

The strike is being joined by drivers who are members of the Rail, Maritime and Transport union (RMT).

Trains that do run are set to start later and finish much earlier than usual – typically between 7.30am and 6.30pm.

The Rail Delivery Group has advised: “It is expected that nationally around 30 per cent of train services will run but there will be wide variations across the network – with the possibility there will be no trains in some parts of the country and other lines running a normal service.

“It is likely that evening services on some lines will be affected on the days before each strike. Morning services on those lines may also be disrupted on 2 and 4 February because much of the rolling stock will not be in the right depots.”

The National Rail journey planner has been updated with full information on all journeys.

Those with tickets for between 1 and 3 February can use them the day before the ticket date, or up to and including Tuesday 7 February.

Passengers with advance, anytime or off-peak tickets for travel on strike days can also have their ticket refunded with no fee if the train they have booked is cancelled, delayed or rescheduled.

Teachers

Wednesday will be the biggest teachers’ strike in 15 years, as staff across England and Wales walk out in co-ordinated national action.

Hundreds of thousands of members of the National Education Union (NEU) are heading to the picket lines for the first of seven days of industrial action scheduled throughout February and March in an ongoing dispute over pay.

Dr Mary Bousted, joint general secretary of the NEU, said she expects 85 per cent of schools to either fully or partially close on Wednesday, meaning around 18,000 schools will face major disruption.

strike map shared by the NEU on Tuesday suggested the figure could be even higher, with teachers at more than 25,000 schools across the country preparing some form of protest today.

Non-striking teachers and support staff across England and Wales will refuse to provide remote learning during walkouts in a bid to show solidarity with their striking colleagues and impose maximum pressure on the Government, i has learned.

The boycott will undermine updated Government guidance issued to schools earlier this month, which encouraged teachers to prepare remote learning plans in order to minimise disruption.

Teacher strike dates

England and Wales:

  • 1 February – national strike across England and Wales
  • 14 February – national strike across Wales
  • 28 February – regional strike in the North, North West, and Yorkshire and the Humber
  • 1 March – regional strike in the West Midlands, East Midlands and East
  • 2 March – regional strike in the South West, South East and London

If a pay deal has still not met by this time, the NEU will launch further strikes on:

  • 15 March – national strike across England and Wales
  • 16 March – national strike across England and Wales

Scotland:

  • 1 February – Clackmannanshire and Aberdeen
  • 2 February – Dundee and Argyll and Bute
  • 3 February – South Lanarkshire and Western Isles
  • 6 February – Inverclyde and Shetland
  • 28 February – national strike across Scotland
  • 1 March – national strike across Scotland

The Educational Institute of Scotland is planning a second wave of rolling action from 13 March if there is still no resolution to the dispute.

The Department for Education had said on its Education Hub blog: “In the event of strike action at a school, the school leaders or local authority that manages the school will take all reasonable steps to keep the school open for as many pupils as possible.” It has published guidance in order to “minimise disruption to children and families”.

The blog post continues: “In some schools there may be little or no impact from strike action but in others it may mean that changes are made to the way they operate.

“For example, lessons might be taught by other members of staff or classes might be brought together. If large numbers of staff strike, schools may need to restrict attendance for some pupils.”

University staff

More than 70,000 staff at 150 universities across the UK will strike for 18 days between February and March in disputes over pay, conditions and pensions, with the first strike day on Wednesday.

The University and College Union action will include academics, librarians and other university staff.

The union will also be reballoting its 70,000 members at the 150 universities in dispute to extend the union’s mandate and allow staff to take further action through the rest of the academic year.

Find a full list of the universities affected here.

Civil servants

About 100,000 civil servants will go on strike on Wednesday, the Public and Commercial Services union (PCS) has announced.

The action will go ahead after talks with the Government aimed at resolving a bitter dispute over pay, jobs and conditions were dubbed a “total farce”.

Departments where staff are going on strike include the Department for Work and Pensions, Department of Health and Social Care and Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency, as well as organisations including the Home Office, Ofsted, Border Force and the Maritime and Coastguard Agency.

The PCS has called the action “the largest Civil Service strike for years”.

The Government has offered civil servants a 2 to 3 per cent pay rise, but the PCS is calling for a rise of 10 per cent, in line with inflation.

Find a full list of the affected departments here.

London bus drivers

There is ongoing strike action on Abellio bus services in London, with Transport for London (TfL) warning commuters to expect disruption. Workers are walking out again from Wednesday 1 until Friday 3 February.

Routes affected by the Abellio strike action are mostly in west and south London. TfL says: “On strike days, we will aim to run as many services as possible, but we expect disruption.”

Other services not affected by strikes will be busier than normal. On the days after strikes, a good service will be running by approximately 6am.

Louise Cheeseman, director of buses at TfL, said: “TfL will ensure as many bus services as possible run in west and south London, but they will be busier than normal. If customers need to travel, they are advised to check before they do so and leave extra time for their journeys.”

Find a full list of the affected routes here.

What future strikes are planned?

NHS strikes

Members of the Royal College of Nursing (RCN) will strike again on Monday 6 and Tuesday 7 February.

The decision to strike on 6 February is designed to coincide with the 10th anniversary of the Robert Francis inquiry into Mid Staffordshire NHS Foundation Trust, which highlighted the effect of nurse shortages on patient care and excess deaths.

The February strikes will take place at 73 NHS trusts in England, compared to 44 in December and 55 in January, as well as trusts in Wales.

The RCN says on its website: “Unfairly low pay in our profession is driving chronic understaffing. It puts patients at risk and leaves nursing staff overworked, underpaid and undervalued.”

The strike is being managed to ensure patient safety, meaning that some nurses will continue to work through the action. Derogations – exemptions provided to a member or service from taking part in a walkout – have been issued so the action can follow the RCN’s “life-preserving care model”.

The RCN said: “Patient safety is always paramount. Unlike workers in many other sectors during a strike, some nursing staff continue their work. This is carefully negotiated with employers beforehand to make sure patients are safe.”

Ambulance workers will join nurses and strike on 6 February, the GMB has announced. It confirmed additional strikes on Monday 20 February, and 6 and 20 March.

The action will include paramedics, emergency care assistants and call handlers in seven of the 10 English ambulance services, along with the national Welsh service.

GMB national secretary, Rachel Harrison, said: “Ambulance workers are angry. Our message to the Government is clear – talk pay now.”

Emergency staff represented by the Unite union have announced 10 days of action and are joining the 6 February strike in what trust leaders are warning would be the “biggest ever” strike day in NHS history.

Unite members will also strike on the following dates:

  • Monday 6 February in North West, North East, West Midlands, East Midlands and Wales
  • Thursday 16 February in Northern Ireland
  • Friday 17 February in West Midlands, Northern Ireland.
  • Monday 20 February in East Midlands, North East and Wales
  • Wednesday 22 February in North West
  • Thursday 23 February in Northern Ireland
  • Friday 24 February in Northern Ireland
  • Monday 6 March in North West, North East, West Midlands, East Midlands and Wales
  • Monday 20 March in North West, North East, West Midlands, East Midlands and Wales

Tube strikes

Members of Aslef working on the Bakerloo line will walk out on 4 February and again on 11 February – the first two Saturdays of the month.

They voted to strike as part of a dispute over safety, with the union objecting to a plan it says would allow trains to go into sidings and depots without a check to ensure that passengers have left the train.

Aslef dubbed the proposal “flash and dash”, warning that passengers would have to depend on hearing unreliable PA announcements on 50-year-old trains to avoid being taken into depots and sidings.

Early-morning services are expected to run as planned on Sunday 5 and Sunday 12 February.

TfL has also warned Elizabeth Line services could be changed or cancelled at short notice throughout February, due to ongoing smaller-scale action.

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