Fears of transport chaos as bus staff go on strike during Notting Hill Carnival

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A 48-hour walk-out by bus staff over Bank Holiday weekend could spark traffic chaos for revellers at Notting Hill Carnival, union bosses have warned.

More than 400 controllers are set to strike between August 27 and August 29 in a row over pay sparking fears of widespread disruption across the capital, Unite the union said.

Staff responsible for rerouting buses for major events including Notting Hill carnival are among those involved in a dispute over an “unfair” pay rise offered to workers by Transport for London.

The walk-out comes as more than two million people are expected to descend on west London for the carnival.

The 3.5-mile long parade will shut down huge swathes of Notting Hill, Westbourne Park and Labroke Grove. 

Tube stations will operate an exit only policy at certain times during the event leaving revellers reliant on buses to get around.

Dancers during the parade at last year’s carnival (Isabel Infantes/PA Wire)

Bus station controllers, traffic controllers and traffic enforcement officers are among those who have been offered a £250-per-year non-consolidated payment compared to a 3.2 per cent increase for London Underground workers.

Unite Regional officer Hugh Roberts said: “Hard working TfL staff who perform crucial work keeping bus drivers safe and the network running smoothly, are fed up with being treated as the poor relations. 

Revellers at last year’s carnival (Leon Neal/AFP/Getty Images)

“TfL management must understand that our members are not going to accept a few crumbs from the rich man’s table. They deserve a decent pay rise. 

“The non-consolidated offer is particularly insulting as after the two year pay deal the workers’ pay will still be stuck at current levels.

“The ball is firmly in TfL management’s court, the inevitable disruption this strike will cause can be avoided, by the organisation entering into meaningful negotiations.”

TfL has been contacted for a comment.


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