The biggest rail strike in more than three decades threatens to wreak havoc across the country in some of the summer’s biggest events.
A union boss says union action more than three days later this month “will shut down the system”.
Tens of thousands of RMT union members will walk away over three key issues: wages, mandatory layoffs and safety concerns.
Sky News looks at the train lines and events that will be affected – including the return of the world’s biggest music festival for the first time since 2019, international sporting fixtures and meetings with Commonwealth heads of state.
When is the strike scheduled?
The RMT union walkouts are scheduled for June 21, 23 and 25.
Up to 50,000 of its members across Network Rail, 13 train operators and in the London Underground will strike on June 21 in the “biggest outbreak of industrial action in the UK since 1989”.
About 40,000 railway workers – excluding metro staff – will strike on June 23 and 25, the union said.
Services are likely to be affected throughout the week due to ripple effects on trains and crews.
Strike dates follow polls that ended last month.
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Which lines are affected?
- Chiltern Railways
- Cross country trains
- Greater England
- East Midlands Railway
- Northern Trains
- South East
- South West Railway
- Great Western Railway
- Trans Pennine Express
- Avanti west coast
- West Midlands Trains
What events could be disrupted?
The strike threatens to cause travel problems for thousands of people traveling across the country for various events.
The biggest music event of the summer, the Glastonbury Festival returns after a three-year hiatus due to the pandemic on June 22.
Over 200,000 revelers will descend on Worthy Farm in Somerset for five days of music and entertainment.
Many planned to reach the site by train on the Great Western Railway, which runs from London to the southwest.
Cricket fans traveling to Leeds for the England-New Zealand Test match on June 23 can expect delays.
Other sporting events this week include the British Athletics Championships in Manchester from June 24-26.
Sir Elton John is due to perform at BST Hyde Park on June 24, with the Rolling Stones taking the stage the following day.
There will also be a Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting in London on June 24-25 and it is Armed Forces Day on June 25, with events planned across the country.
The summer solstice will be celebrated at Stonehenge on June 21 when visitors from around the world gather overnight to celebrate the shortest day of the year and watch the sun rise over the stones of Wiltshire.
People eager to see the London Symphony Orchestra play the Triumphal concert at St Paul’s Cathedral on June 23 could also be affected by the strike.
Passengers returning from the Isle of Wight Festival and the Royal Highland Show in Edinburgh could also be delayed as both events end the day before the strike.