football hooligan Bob Crow, member of the Communist Party and spread-leg tube seat specialist, has launched another strike by his union. Thankfully it doesn't affect me this time, here as I am in Birmingham at the Tory conference, but here are some tips for getting around from the Bush.
Hoping to carry on a long tradition of the RMT holding everyone to ransom Mr Crow is adamant that the problems arising out of private firms being taken over by TfL will not impact on his members' pay rises. He recently called for a "decent pay increase" this year. As well he might, having trousered a 12% rise himself. Now he says that any staff reductions - yes any - will be resisted to the death. Guess who pays the price? Yes, us.
His basic pay rose from £84,923 in 2008 to £94,747 at the end of last year, according to figures published by the RMT. And his overall pay package rose from £122,167 to £133,183 last year. On top of this he claimed £9,989 in expenses and £2,376 in travel costs, taking his total income to £145,548.
So what do we do to get around? The following arise from years of experience on days like these .. feel free to add or correct in the comments section for the benefit of fellow W12 strugglers!
Don't bank on getting any bus at all from the Green area, even if that's what TfL people are telling you to do. The crowds will be immense, and expect plenty of pushing and shoving.
Bushers should remember that the Overground does not get affected by Tube strikes, and is a very useful way of getting to the right part of London from where you can get a bus into whichever part of central London you need to get to, north or south.
You can also use the Thames Path - it is a beautiful if little used towpath that runs beside the river from Hammersmith Bridge (opposite side to Furnival Gdns) right into central London, via Putney and Wandsworth. It takes you past all of the bridges into the West End on the north side of the river.
During the last strike I remember reading an emotional comment from an RMT member on the excellent Going Underground blog, which said that she had not voted for strike action and had been personally very affected by the sight of people who had lost their jobs in the economic crisis carrying boxes of contents from their desks through the barriers at the tube. She apologised for the actions of Bob Crow and the other dinosaurs who led her union. Beat the strike via the Overground and help put a nail in the obnoxious clown's leadership of an otherwise fantastic workforce.