A list of planned staffing cuts at tube stations has been obtained by Labour Assembly Member Val Shawcross, and it shows that London Underground (LU) plans to reduce staffing at 216 out of 270 tube stations.
This is part of the plan to close all tube station ticket offices and lose a total of 950 staff during current opening hours (there will be vacancies for 200 staff as part of the 24 hour weekend running). 588 frontline staff are set to lose their jobs.
Stations due to lose half or more of current staffing levels are Barons Court, Edgware, Finchley Central, Kilburn, Dagenham Heathway, Parsons Green, Plaistow, Stanmore, East Ham, Southfields, Golders Green, Upton Park and the Hammersmith and City part of Hammersmith. It looks like rumours of suburban stations being singly staffed are true, though comparing the proposed staffing levels to current numbers, we find that many stations won't notice much difference.
When it comes to major stations, Victoria is slated to lose 8.2 full time equivalent (FTE) staff members, Leicester Square 4.6, London Bridge 3.6, Waterloo 1.6, Liverpool Street 5.6, Charing Cross 4.4, King's Cross 7.6 and Paddington 8.4, while Euston would gain 5.4 FTEs.
As part of an agreement to end strikes earlier this year, LU promised union members that a station-by-station consultation would be carried out, which appears not to have happened. Neither is Transport for London waiting for London TravelWatch — London's passenger watchdog — to carry out its own investigation into how people buy tickets. Val Shawcross said:
"The issue isn’t necessarily whether staff are based in ticket offices or on the station concourse, but whether staffing levels can provide all customers — especially the disabled and elderly — with a good service. I am calling on TfL to address this issue and to await the outcome of TravelWatch’s consultation survey before finalising plans. It is deplorable that TfL is not carrying out its own station by station consultation, so it is even more important that they take TravelWatch’s findings into account."
You can see the list of staff cuts, provided by the Labour party, here.
Update: TfL has provided us with this statement from Phil Hufton, London Underground’s Chief Operating Officer:
"It is nonsense to suggest our plans to modernise staffing at stations will not benefit passengers. Under our proposals there will be more staff visible and available to help our passengers and keep them safe and secure as they will be brought out from behind glass windows and back offices to work where people need them — within ticket halls, and on concourses and platforms.
"Every station will remain staffed at all times whilst the service is running and there will be even more visible staff available to help customers including those with disabilities and new Visitor Information Centres will cater for the needs of tourists and visitors to London at the busiest Tube stations, including selling tickets.
"We have been consulting with trade unions and staff over our plans to modernise the Tube since November last year and have completed a ‘station by station’ review, which we have shared with the trades unions, London Travelwatch and the London Assembly and published on tfl.gov.uk. We expect the detail of these numbers to change as we consult locally with staff at each station and develop rosters over the coming months."