Further controversy has hit Transport for London over their plans for a 24hr London Underground service, as it’s been revealed that the company are forking out £1.5m a month on wages for 500 new staff – even though the service hasn’t started yet!
The new staff were recruited specifically for the overnight weekend service, and have been being paid since the Night Tube was set to start on 12th September.
The proposals for a 24hr service has been hit by problems ever since it was announced, with unions taking industrial action and several strikes impacting customers across the capital. Trade unions and TfL return to Acas (an arbitration body) this week to continue discussions over pay and conditions, but regardless, it has already been confirmed that the overnight trains will not start until 2016.
The 500 staff are currently deployed across the Tube network in the meantime – with 137 drivers still in training, and 307 in part-time station positions. The rest are working without engineering and service control, and some will be used to replace staff leaving or retiring.
TfL said it remains “operationally ready” to deliver the Night Tube, and are launching a voluntary redundancy programme that will see almost 850 jobs cut as part of a scheme to close down ticket offices.
Watch this space for further updates on the service being introduced, and while you’re still waiting, liftshare to avoid expensive late-night cabs!
Photo credit: Transport for London
Author Lex Barber