Tube strike disrupts commuters despite Hampstead and Highgate stations remaining open

15:42 05 February 2014

Traffic chaos in Church Row, Hampstead. Picture: Nigel Sutton.

Traffic chaos in Church Row, Hampstead. Picture: Nigel Sutton.

© Nigel Sutton email

Commuters faced congestion and disruption today despite Hampstead and Highgate Tube stations remaining open in the face of London-wide Tube strikes.

The Hampstead, Highgate and Belsize Park stations were open and running normally despite prior warnings that all would be closed due to a 48-hour walkout of staff called by unions RMT and TSSA from 9pm yesterday.

A Transport for London (TfL) spokesman said that as more staff than expected turned up for work today, it was able to safely open stations it had planned to close.

However, roads in Hampstead were still hit by severe congestion as a result of the strike, with Church Row suffering from severe early morning traffic.

A second 48-hour walkout is due to begin at 9pm next Tuesday, in protest at TfL’s plans to close all ticket offices and cut 950 jobs.

TfL insists the measures are needed to modernise systems and save £50million a year.

Closures to Jubilee line stations between Waterloo and Finchley Road were enforced today as planned, causing huge disruption.

Large queues of commuters wishing to use Swiss Cottage Tube station were forced to wait for buses outside the closed station, with many deciding to abandon their journeys altogether.

Belsize Park resident Tom Bullen, 28, intended to travel to work at a recording studio in Baker Street but decided to return home after waiting among the crowds in Swiss Cottage.

He said: “I’m ready to give up and go home, it’s just totally pointless. I’m annoyed with the unions because as far as I can tell no one is going to lose their jobs.

“There’s no point in having ticket offices anymore; no one uses ticket offices.”

Former university lecturer Dr David Stone, 64, of Belsize Park, abandoned his plans to travel to Westminster for a meeting with Hampstead and Kilburn MP Glenda Jackson after encountering the queues in Swiss Cottage.

He said: “I could just wait and see if I can squeeze on to a bus like cattle but then there’s the problem of whether I will get back.

“There are a lot of people completely stranded and looking completely miserable about it. I’m going to abandon my plans today.

“It’s been a write-off and if you multiply that over all the millions across the city, it must be very damaging to London.

“I’m not annoyed with any party. It shows a lack of maturity from all sides in not being able to sit down around a table.

“There must be a better way to handle disputes than like this.”


Latest News Stories

Squatters at West End Lane

Squatters are currently believed to have barricaded themselves into a former council building in West Hampstead after an eviction order was served.

London Ambulance Service has been recommended for special measures following a CQC report

The London Ambulance Service has been placed into special measures after being slammed by a health watchdog investigation as “inadequate”.

Tulip Siddiq challenged the Prime Minister in the House of Commons

Mothers’ maiden names should be listed on marriage certificates alongside fathers’ names, Hampstead and Kilburn’s MP has told Parliament.

Piers Corbyn, right, with the squatters in West Hampstead and Cllr Lorna Russell

Squatters who have occupied empty former council offices in West Hampstead will appear in court today.

Cllr Sarah Hayward

The leader at Camden Council has warned that the Chancellor’s comprehensive spending review may leave the authority struggling to carry out essential duties and place vulnerable residents at risk.

Crouch End Festival Chorus at St John's Smith Square. Photo: Emily Soppet

The Crouch End Festival Chorus is taking a deep breath and running a 12-hour sponsored singing marathon this Saturday to raise funds for a major recording project.

Flowers on Parkland Walk

Police are investigating after live ammunition was discovered in Parkland Walk.

The youth attacked the women in Parliament Hill

The parents of a woman who was robbed and sexually assaulted on Hampstead Heath stormed out of a courtroom in anger after her 16-year-old attacker was jailed for just one year.

Most read news

Property Newsletter Sign-up

Get the latest North London property news and features straight to your inbox with our regular newsletter

I am also happy to receive other emails...
Fields marked with a * are mandatory
Email Marketing by e-shot


MAC Makeup

MAC are renowned for their flawless, fabulous make up that is used worldwide by the stars. You too can have the chance to have the perfect makeup to suit your needs with £1,000 to spend on all the glam goodies you like!


You are never far from an Argos, wherever in the country you may be. They are like a magical cavern where whatever you need they seem to have it out the back behind the counter. So why not put them to the test with this great MyOffers competition to win £1000 to spend in-store.

Digital Edition

Read the Hampstead & Highgate Express e-edition today E-edition
Family Notices 24

Local business directory

Our trusted business finder