Socialist Worker

All change as London Underground PPP work goes in-house

Issue No. 2201

Boris Johnson took the Tube Lines private consortium back into public hands this week as workers there began a ballot for strikes against attacks.

The Tory mayor of London spent £310 million buying out the Bechtel and Amey (Ferrovial) companies.

It marks the collapse of the disastrous £30 billion Public-Private Partnership (PPP) scheme that ran the infrastructure work.

Metronet, which was responsible for the maintenance work on much of the tube, went into administration in 2006 and was brought in-house.


Tube Lines does the maintenance on the Jubilee, Piccadilly and Northern lines.

Workers are still worried that there will be cuts, despite the firm being brought back in-house.

Members of the RMT transport union began balloting at the company over attacks on their terms and conditions, and lack of job security.

At a 25-strong meeting of the Trouble Down The Line rank and file rail workers’ group in London on Monday activists said the fight needs to continue.

One said the union must resist attempts to make workers and passengers pay for the buyout – that the companies must take the hit.

Others demanded the union move quickly to ballot all London Underground workers against management’s plans to cut 800 jobs from ticket offices and platforms. There was frustration at the time it has taken the RMT to do this.

Many wanted to co-ordinate action across the tube network – and with British Airways workers – to increase the strength of the strikes.

RMT representatives were meeting Tube Lines managers to discuss the issues as Socialist Worker went to press on Tuesday.

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Tue 11 May 2010, 17:13 BST
Issue No. 2201
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