Train strikes LATEST: Travel chaos as just 20% of services to run tomorrow; plus Eurotunnel & cancelled... - The Sun

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10:03, 26 Jul 2022Updated: 10:06, 26 Jul 2022

BRITS are warned to only travel by train unless absolutely necessary tomorrow as thousands of workers go on strike.

Some 40,000 workers under Network Rail plan to ditch their stations on Wednesday, alongside 14 operators, it has been reported.

Only 20 per cent of train services will run on Wednesday, therefore Brits have been urged to avoid travel at all costs on this day.

This could cause disruptions for the Women's Euro 2022 semi-final, which is being held in Milton Keynes.

Simultaneous walkouts and chaos will cripple Britain's transport infrastructure during the first official week of summer holidays for most schools.

Traffic jams swamped the Eurotunnel car terminal in Folkestone, Kent, after part of the M20 was shut to park 600 lorries.

It was a knock-on from the nightmare that gripped the Port of Dover on Friday and Saturday — with ferries struggling to clear the freight backlog.

Ferry operator DFDS told Dover passengers that there were "queues of around an hour" for French border checks this morning as they issued travel advice.

They advised passengers to "allow a minimum of 120 minutes before your departure to complete all controls" amid reports queues had eased.

In a further blow to Brits, Ryanair will also strike this week.

Read our travel delays live blog below for the latest news & updates...

Holidaymakers face huge queues at Manchester and Bristol airports

HUNDREDS of travellers faced lengthy queues at Manchester and Bristol airports yesterday.

And more misery is possible as British Airways pilots threaten strikes over pay.

BA pilots were considering a ballot on strike action last night after bosses rejected demands for a new pay deal.

Industrial action could heap more misery on hard-pressed holidaymakers already facing airport delays and cancellations.

BA pilots agreed to temporary pay cuts in 2020 to avoid mass redundancies during the Covid pandemic, but no end date was agreed.

The airline endured a devastating two years which saw the business lose more than £4billion. Pilots accepted a five per cent pay reward earlier this year.

Now pilots’ union Balpa is demanding proper pay rises for its members as BA returns to profitability, saying the airline “seems to ignore you until you issue a [strike] ballot”.

Liz Truss vows to limit trade unions' ability to 'paralyse the economy'

Liz Truss has pledged to do "everything in her power" to ensure "militant action" from trade unions can no longer "paralyse" the economy if she wins the Tory leadership contest.

The Foreign Secretary announced a series of measures aimed at preventing trade unions from causing disruption on strategic rail routes and other national services.

If she becomes prime minister at the beginning of September, Ms Truss said her government would introduce legislation in the first 30 days of Parliament to guarantee a minimum level of service on vital national infrastructure.

Tailored minimum thresholds, including staffing levels, would be determined with each industry.

She would also ensure strike action has significant support from union members by raising the minimum threshold for voting in favour of strike action from 40% to 50%.

The minimum notice period for strike action would be raised from two weeks to four weeks, and a cooling-off period would be implemented so that unions can no longer strike as many times as they like in the six-month period after a ballot.

Ms Truss would also put an end to members receiving tax-free payments from trade unions on the days they are on strike.

She said: "We need tough and decisive action to limit trade unions' ability to paralyse our economy.

"I will do everything in my power to make sure that militant action from trade unions can no longer cripple the vital services that hard-working people rely on."

Port of Dover hanging on ‘knife edge’

Holidaymakers have been warned the Kent port is on a “knife edge” as the country’s travel mayhem entered its third torturous day.

A “critical incident” was declared at Dover on Friday, with holidaymakers told to arrive six hours early for ferry queues lasting up to five hours.

A ramp up of post-Brexit border checks and French authorities’ understaffing checkpoints have been blamed for the hold-ups.

Local authorities have now urged ministers to handle the issue as a “national problem” instead of the “sticking plaster” approach.

Brits queue for hours at UK airports – just as school holidays start

Almost a million holidaymakers were expected to leave the UK on flights this weekend.

Long queues could be seen at Heathrow and Bristol airports

And Manchester and Stansted also struggled with an influx of arrivals. 

Social media was awash with complaints of lost luggage not being recovered. 

One holidaymaker at Manchester told us: “We were packed in like sardines. It was mayhem.”

Click here to read more.

Little-known Universal Credit rule could see you fly home from holiday EARLY

Sun seekers are jetting off on their jollies despite the travel chaos, but this mistake could see your benefit payments cut or stopped all together.

If you’re planning on going abroad for any length of time you must tell the Department for Work and Pensions about your plans.

If you don’t report this, you could see your claim stopped or reduced, and you might have to cut your holiday short.

You can go for a holiday for up to a month – but you still need to stick to the conditions of your claim, which involves looking for a job.

How you report a change in your personal circumstances depends on what benefit you are claiming.

Click here to read more.

More queues at Dover as fears of ‘vulnerable summer’ grow

Queues are building at the Port of Dover amid fears that the severe disruption seen in recent days could return to Kent throughout the summer.

Ferry operator DFDS told passengers that there were “queues of around an hour” for French border checks on Monday morning, and to “allow a minimum of 120 minutes before your departure to complete all controls”.

P&O Ferries wrote on Twitter: “The queues have picked up and it is taking approximately one hour to clear passport control.”

Passengers were forced to wait for several hours on Friday as bumper-to-bumper traffic stretching for miles marred the journeys of tens of thousands of families at the start of the school summer holidays.

This was blamed on a staffing shortage at French border control and a serious crash on the M20 motorway.

AA warns travel chaos to jam Britain’s roads during warm months

Head of roads policy at the AA Jack Cousens shared his worries that delays will last throughout the warm months.

He explained: “We are concerned that we could be in for a repeat of this congestion across the summer.

“Drivers due to use both Dover and Folkestone to head into Europe on Fridays, Saturdays and Sunday mornings between now and the reopening of schools may see a repetition of these delays.”

New rail map shows only half of services will run this week

RAIL bosses have unveiled a new map of misery showing how only half of Britain’s network will be open this week.

More than 50,000 railway staff will walkout in the biggest dispute on the network in 33 years.

A map shows the lines which will continue operating in and out of London during the affected dates.

More queues at Dover as fears of ‘vulnerable summer’ grow

Queues are building at the Port of Dover amid fears that the severe disruption seen in recent days could return to Kent throughout the summer.

Ferry operator DFDS told passengers that there were “queues of around an hour” for French border checks on Monday morning, and to “allow a minimum of 120 minutes before your departure to complete all controls”.

P&O Ferries wrote on Twitter: “The queues have picked up and it is taking approximately one hour to clear passport control.”

Passengers were forced to wait for several hours on Friday as bumper-to-bumper traffic stretching for miles marred the journeys of tens of thousands of families at the start of the school summer holidays.

This was blamed on a staffing shortage at French border control and a serious crash on the M20 motorway.

Passengers in Folkestone ‘treated worse than cattle’

Passengers at Folkestone said they were “treated worse than cattle” while stuck in their cars for up to 21 hours this weekend.

The gridlock was blamed on the decision to shut a 24-mile stretch of the M20 due to Operation Brock.

Kent Police effectively turned the roads into a car park for thousands of lorries in an attempt to ease congestion – which seems to have backfired.

The AA branded the entrance to the Eurotunnel in Folkestone the “hotspot of holiday hell”, warning drivers to “be prepared”.

Transport for London reviewing long-term funding settlement

Transport for London (TfL) says it is reviewing a draft proposal from the Government for a long-term funding settlement.

TfL has been operating on a series of emergency short-term funding deals since falling into financial trouble during the pandemic.

Andy Byford, London’s Transport Commissioner, said the long-term funding – if agreed – would provide much-needed certainty for those in the nation’s capital.

He said: “Since keeping London moving through the darkest periods of the pandemic we have been making the case to Government that there can be no UK recovery without a London recovery and that there can be no London recovery without a properly funded transport network.

“We are grateful for the support we have received so far, and maintain we have met every condition that has been set by Government as we have worked towards agreeing a multi-year funding settlement that would give certainty to London and to the tens of thousands of jobs across the country that are directly linked to TfL.”

Holidaymakers warned ‘long way to go’ before Dover backlog cleared

Holidaymakers and residents have been warned there is a “way to go” to clear the backlog at Dover with a “very busy” day expected but port authorities expressed relief at improved levels of French border staff.

Some 10,000 cars were expected at the port on Saturday, with more than 13,000 passengers said to be “on their way” before 10am.

Scenes of gridlocked roads and bumper-to-bumper cars seen on Friday were repeated as travellers, some of whom got out of their vehicles to stretch their legs while traffic was at a standstill, endured more lengthy waits.

Port of Dover chief executive Doug Bannister indicated that five to six-hour delays could still be the case on Saturday, which was already expected to be a busier day than Friday.

This is one of the busiest periods for foreign travel from the UK as most schools in England and Wales have broken up for summer.

Chaotic scenes at the port have prompted Foreign Secretary and Tory leadership hopeful Liz Truss to blame France for “entirely avoidable” delays, calling on officials there to “build up capacity at the border to limit any further disruption for British tourists and to ensure this appalling situation is avoided in future”.

Port of Dover hanging on ‘knife edge’

Holidaymakers have been warned the Kent port is on a “knife edge” as the country’s travel mayhem entered its third torturous day.

A “critical incident” was declared at Dover on Friday, with holidaymakers told to arrive six hours early for ferry queues lasting up to five hours.

A ramp up of post-Brexit border checks and French authorities’ understaffing checkpoints have been blamed for the hold-ups.

Local authorities have now urged ministers to handle the issue as a “national problem” instead of the “sticking plaster” approach.

Brit fined £426 for making simple mistake on holiday

The 42-year-man was visiting Rome's Piazza di Spagna during his Italian break.

However, he was caught by Rome police officers when he dipped his feet in the fountain to cool off.

Not only is this banned, with the strict fine, but he was also issued with a temporary ban from returning to the area, according to local media.

A number of holidaymakers have been fined for jumping into Rome's fountains in recent months, after the country struggled with temperatures as high as 40C.

While tourists can use the free drinking water fountains at the landmarks, going into them is banned.

Click here to read more!

The best flight-free holidays so you can avoid the airport MADNESS

The cancellations, lost luggage and a sizzling British heatwave that caused runways to melt has created carnage at UK airports in recent weeks.

And that chaos looks set to continue with easyJet boss Johan Lundgren admitting he “can’t guarantee” passengers won’t suffer more disruption this summer.

CRUISE: Scandinavia, sailing from Southampton, the Princess Cruise voyage will take you on a culinary tour of Scandinavia, stopping in Oslo, Norway and Copenhagen in Denmark STAYCATION: Norfolk, Sample some from any of the seaside restaurants (it’s guaranteed to be good), but not before hitting the waves for a surfing lesson. After busy beach days, have a soak in the cottage’s free-standing tub or stick on a film in front of the fire – if it’s not too hot!

Click here to get some more pain free, plane free holiday ideas!

Little-known Universal Credit rule could see you fly home from holiday EARLY

Sun seekers are jetting off on their jollies despite the travel chaos, but this mistake could see your benefit payments cut or stopped all together.

If you're planning on going abroad for any length of time you must tell the Department for Work and Pensions about your plans.

If you don't report this, you could see your claim stopped or reduced, and you might have to cut your holiday short.

You can go for a holiday for up to a month - but you still need to stick to the conditions of your claim, which involves looking for a job.

How you report a change in your personal circumstances depends on what benefit you are claiming.

Click here to read more.

Brits queue for hours at UK airports – just as school holidays start

Almost a million holidaymakers were expected to leave the UK on flights this weekend.

Long queues could be seen at Heathrow and Bristol airports

And Manchester and Stansted also struggled with an influx of arrivals. 

Social media was awash with complaints of lost luggage not being recovered. 

One holidaymaker at Manchester told us: “We were packed in like sardines. It was mayhem.”

Click here to read more.

Striking train drivers’ union branded ‘selfish and cruel’ 

A train drivers’ union has been branded cruel for going ahead with a strike during the Commonwealth Games.

Aslef’s walkout will blight the event in Birmingham, according to West Midlands Mayor Andy Street.

Union boss Mick Whelan has been urged to call off the strike next Saturday — also the first day of England’s football league season.

Mr Street said: “This is a selfish, cruelly timed and cynical manipulation of a landmark national event.

"I urge Aslef to step back from the brink and rethink this heartless decision.”

Up to 1.2million are expected to attend Games events, which begin on Thursday.

Click here to read more.

Heathrow Airport’s flight cap ‘will last until after OCTOBER half-term’

The airport's cap on flights will last until after the October half-term, it was reported last night.

Airlines are believed to have been told by Britain's biggest airport it will curb flights until October 29 due to staff shortages.

The decision could cause significant disruptions into the autumn - coming off the back of a summer of hell at Britain's airports.

Click here to read more.

Passengers in Folkestone ‘treated worse than cattle’

Passengers at Folkestone said they were “treated worse than cattle” while stuck in their cars for up to 21 hours this weekend.

The gridlock was blamed on the decision to shut a 24-mile stretch of the M20 due to Operation Brock.

Kent Police effectively turned the roads into a car park for thousands of lorries in an attempt to ease congestion – which seems to have backfired.

The AA branded the entrance to the Eurotunnel in Folkestone the “hotspot of holiday hell”, warning drivers to “be prepared”.

Travel warning as airport luggage chaos could last MONTHS 

Brits have been warned travel luggage chaos could last MONTHS as bags today piled up at Gatwick Airport.

Suitcases were today abandoned by travellers returning to the Sussex airport after they waited for them for more than an hour.

Families desperate for a summer holiday have this weekend faced travel chaos with massive queues at airports and to get on ferries from Dover.

And the nightmare is feared to be just beginning with chaos and confusion over luggage gripping UK airports in the first summer holiday since 2019 not hampered by Covid restrictions.

Click here to read more.

Travel warning as entire SUMMER of chaos looms

Brits have been warned to expect an entire summer of travel chaos as the Channel Tunnel crumbles under the pressure of high demand.

The undersea route linking the UK to France has been dubbed the "hotspot of holiday hell" as vehicles were backed up bumper to bumper.

Holidaymakers have been warned the Kent port is on a "knife edge" as the country's travel mayhem entered its third torturous day.

A "critical incident" was declared at Dover on Friday, with holidaymakers told to arrive six hours early for ferry queues lasting up to five hours.

A ramp up of post-Brexit border checks and French authorities' understaffing checkpoints have been blamed for the hold-ups.

Local authorities have now urged ministers to handle the issue as a "national problem" instead of the "sticking plaster" approach.

Click here to read more.

M20 closed to non-freight traffic between junctions 8 & 9

National Highways reopened the coastbound M20 between junctions 9 and 11 in Kent shortly after 1am on Monday.

But the motorway remains closed to non-freight traffic between junctions 8 and 9 as part of Operation Brock, which is in place due to the difficulties at Dover.

There were also long queues on the roads approaching Eurotunnel’s Folkestone terminal over the weekend.

Ryanair Spain strikes start today – find out if your flight is affected

The airline is bracing itself for four days of strikes this week, starting this week.

Strikes will last until Thursday, July 28 as part of an ongoing argument over pay.

Ten Spanish airports will be affected, including Madrid, Malaga, Barcelona, Alicante, Sevilla, Palma, Valencia, Girona, Santiago de Compostela and Ibiza.

A Ryanair spokesperson previously said the action was "poorly supported" and called by unions representing "tiny numbers" of staff.

They also said they expected "minimal disruptions" during the walkouts.

Click here to read more!

Strike date round-up

The National Union of Rail, Maritime and Transport Workers (RMT) and Transport Salaried Staffs’ Association – July 27

Arriva Rail London, Chiltern Railways, Greater Anglia, Great Western, Hull Trains, LNER, Southeastern and West Midlands Trains – July 30

RMT – August 18 and 20

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