Socialist Worker



02 October 2004
AN ATTEMPT to reopen the division in the Aslef train drivers’ union over the disciplining of two top officials failed on the first day of the union conference on Monday.

More stations were closed than ever before

10 July 2004
SOME TUBES were running during our strike, but management were very worried by just how few Aslef union drivers crossed the picket line.

Activists: 'It's our union'

26 June 2004
ACTIVISTS IN train drivers' union Aslef are battling to undo the damage wrought by a bitter faction fight among their top national officials. Anti-union commentators have seized on reports of a brawl at a barbecue held at the union's headquarters in north London.

Rail union leader makes schoolboy threat of union busting

17 January 2004
THE THREAT of strike action has forced the general secretary of the train drivers' Aslef union to withdraw a shocking union-busting letter he issued to his own staff.

Strikes are timetabled

20 December 2003
TRAIN DRIVERS on the Gatwick Express were set to strike on Christmas Eve and again on New Year's Eve as Socialist Worker went to press. There have already been two strikes by the 60 drivers in the Aslef union over pay.

Gatwick Express

13 December 2003
DRIVERS IN the Aslef union on the Gatwick Express route struck for 24 hours for the second time on Monday over pay. Further strikes are planned for Christmas Eve and New Year's Eve.

We won't accept second class pay

06 December 2003
DRIVERS IN the Aslef train drivers' union on the Gatwick Express struck solidly on Friday of last week.

Two days of strikes made the bosses listen

25 October 2003
WORKERS AT the Heathrow Express are jubilant after winning their long-running dispute with management. Members of the Aslef rail union have been campaigning for full recognition and bargaining rights on the line, which runs from Paddington to Heathrow, for over two years.

Heathrow is taking the express line to action

04 October 2003
MEMBERS OF the Aslef rail workers union on the Heathrow Express have voted to take action against management bullying and low pay. This includes an overtime ban and several 24 hour strikes. The first strike was set for this Friday 3 October.

Are left wing union leaders too awkward for New Labour?

04 October 2003
IN 1998 a relatively unknown train driver from Leeds, Mick Rix, won the general secretary election in Aslef. He was the first in a series of new left wing trade union leaders now known as the "awkward squad". Their election signalled a wider radicalisation taking place inside Britain's trade union movement.

Drivers express their anger

27 September 2003
STAFF ON the Heathrow Express, which takes passengers from central London to Heathrow airport, have voted in favour of strike action. The Aslef union plans three 24-hour strikes next month after 41 out of 76 members voted in favour.

Why did Rix lose election?

26 July 2003
THE SHOCK defeat of Mick Rix in the election for general secretary of the train drivers' Aslef union brought a glimmer of relief to Tony Blair's ailing government last week. Mick Rix lost to Shaun Brady by 3,299 votes to 4,475 on a turnout of over 45 percent.

Activists have to learn lessons of Rix's defeat

26 July 2003
THE DEFEAT of Mick Rix, the leader of the Aslef train drivers' union, has caused big waves. Many union activists are asking how it could happen. As contentious as what went wrong is the question of what should come next, and what his defeat means in other unions.

Unity message in north east

19 July 2003
THOUSANDS OF people attended the biggest Durham Miners Gala in over a decade on Saturday of last week. The event was co-sponsored by the National Union of Mineworkers and the Unison union. It attracted the support of many other trade unions, including the RMT, Aslef and Usdaw.

Drivers' ballot gets green light

28 June 2003
BALLOT PAPERS went out this week for the general secretary election in Aslef, the train drivers' union. General secretary Mick Rix is seeking re-election, nominated by 83 branches. Shaun Brady, who has only 11 branch nominations, is challenging him. Rix became general secretary five years ago in an election that marked the beginning of a series of successes for left wing candidates.

Aslef conference

14 June 2003
DELEGATES TO the conference of the train drivers' union Aslef unanimously reaffirmed the union's support for the anti-war movement and condemned the war against Iraq. Conference adopted an executive committee report condemning the "unnecessary, immoral and unlawful" war.

May Day

10 May 2003
SOME 2,000 people attended the May Day rally in Liverpool on Monday of this week. They heard Mick Rix, the leader of the Aslef train drivers' union, and George Galloway MP attack Blair's war on Iraq.

EWS train drivers

15 February 2003
OVER 2,500 drivers from English Welsh & Scottish Railway (EWS) struck on Saturday across Britain, leading to the cancellation of around 200 trains. Drivers, members of the Aslef union, want better pay and pensions plus cuts in hours.

Train drivers

08 February 2003
DRIVERS ON English Welsh & Scottish Railway (EWS) struck solidly last Saturday and plan another strike this Saturday. They run freight trains and are members of the Aslef union. EWS drivers are demanding what they have been campaigning for over the last three years-a proper pay rise, a 35- hour week, all of pay to count towards pensions, and a maximum ten-hour day.

Train drivers

25 January 2003
AROUND 2,500 train drivers working for the freight company English Welsh & Scottish Railway (EWS) are to strike over pay and hours. They include workers who have recently blocked ammunition trains in Scotland. The workers are members of Aslef and voted overwhelmingly for action in a ballot. Strikes have been set for four Saturdays-1,8,15,22 February.

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