Trade union protest against closure of Whitechapel station ticket office
PUBLISHED: 15:04 15 July 2013 | UPDATED: 15:50 15 July 2013
A trade union demonstration was staged outside Whitechapel Station this morning in protest over plans to axe its staffed ticket office.
The protest was organised by the National Union of Rail, Maritime and Transport Workers, who say it could open the “floodgates” for more ticket office closures.
RMT General Secretary Bob Crow said: “RMT is in no doubt that if the Whitechapel ticket office is axed it will open the floodgates to a surge of closures in the drive to de-staffing, which will turn the Undergound into a criminals paradise and leave passengers who need support and advice stranded.”
The current ticket office at Whitechapel will be demolished in 2014 as part of the station’s expansion for Crossrail. Staff will be helping out around the ticket hall instead as increased ticketing technology is introduced.
Director of Strategy and Service Development for London Underground, Gareth Powell, said:
“Where we are redeveloping a station we seek to make the best possible use of space, and in some cases this could mean redeveloping a station with increased ticketing technology rather than a replacement ticket office.”
He added that the new lay-out would allow another lift to be put in at the station.