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Boris to axe 6,000 jobs & 268 Tube ticket offices

12 August 2013

London Mayor Boris Johnson is to axe 6,000 tube and rail jobs and close all 268 tube ticket offices across the capital, it was revealed today.

The jobs will go on both the underground and overground networks over the next six years, according to secret plans agreed by TfL's senior management team.

The first 2,000 jobs will go in the next two years with the closure of every tube ticket office throughout the capital. They will be replaced by 20 plus travel centres, mainly at major stations like Waterloo, Euston and King's Cross.

The huge job cuts-22% of the total transport workforce of 27,000-provoked anger from union leaders and Labour politicians today after they were revealed in the London Evening Standard.

"Boris had better re-think if he thinks he can sacrifice six thousand Londoners' jobs on his Long March to Downing Street," said Manuel Cortes, leader of the TSSA rail union.

"We have a deal with TfL which clearly rules out compulsory redundancies. If he tears that up, all bets are off.

"We all know he is a shameless politician but this really takes the biscuit for sheer hypocrisy.

"Here is a man who was elected in 2008 on a promise to keep every ticket office open.

"Now in his last two years in office-before he returns to the Commons to stab Cameron in the back-he plans to stand on his head and close every single one of them.

"He promised Londoners a world class tube. He will leave a second class service with a demoralised workforce and millions of frustrated passengers."

Such is the sensitivity of the cuts-to meet a £220 million cut in the operations budget-that they are being planned by a special TfL "hit squad" working secretly off site in rented offices in Smith Square, Westminster.

Headed by former head of health and safety, Mike Strzelecki, now grandly re-named Director of Transformation, the title of the cutback in jobs and ticket offices is the bland, but misleading,;"Every Journey Matters".

The plan envisages all ticket offices being closed by 2015 with all future passengers having to buy their tickets from machines.

At the travel centres, station staff will be on hand to advise passengers, particularly the elderly and tourists.

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