Beleaguered Londoners

The sun might be shining this morning, but you wouldn’t have found many smiles on the streets of London. The 72-hour Tube strike, called by maintenance workers of failed Underground contractor Metronet, means that two-thirds of the network was effectively closed.

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Last Updated: 31 Aug 2010

You could tell something was up by the sheer number of wobbly cyclists (and no, we don’t just mean Boris Johnson), and pedestrians around. No doubt, many others taken the opportunity to work from home today or even enjoy a ‘duvet day’.

London has suffered on the transport front recently. Not only from tube mismanagement, but also from nightmare airport experiences, namely the joy that is Heathrow. MT has had its eye on the companies behind these debacles – Metronet and BAA. The first failed; the other is trying to claw back some of the reputation it lost over the summer after politicians, business, the press and even hippy climate change protesters laid into it good and proper. BAA’s new chairman Sir Nigel Rudd has an impressive reputation for turning around flagging businesses but even he has admitted that he has his work cut out.

Someone else who likes a challenge is Tory mayoral contender Boris Johnson, who launched his election campaign yesterday. If voted in, he promises to phase out bendy-buses, provide police support for Londoners who want to stand up to local thugs, and explore the possibility of 24-hour policing. Also of note, is his intention to introduce air-conditioning on the Tube. Something fuming commuters would no doubt have appreciated over the next three days.

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