London

Four-day DLR strike to hit London Marathon

DLR train Image copyright TfL
Image caption Thousands of runners taking part in Sunday's race could be affected by a DLR strike

A four-day strike on the Docklands Light Railway (DLR) is set to hit this year's London Marathon.

The walk-out could affect thousands of runners required to register at the the ExCel centre in east London, which is on the DLR line, before Sunday's race.

Transport for London (TfL) says limited services will be "prioritised" to support the marathon.

Union RMT and DLR operators KeolisAmey Docklands Ltd (KAD) are locked in a dispute over working practices.

The walk-out is due to start on 04:00 BST on Friday, affecting both Custom House and Prince Regent DLR stations near the ExCel.

The centre will be open for registration from Wednesday.

Image copyright Reuters
Image caption More than 40,000 people are set to take part in this year's London Marathon

Mark Davis, interim general manager of the DLR, said: "Millions of pounds are raised for charity at the London Marathon and we don't want to see the thousands of people who have signed up to run, or their supporters, disrupted.

"If this strike goes ahead, we will work hard to provide as much of a service as possible over the four days with a particular aim of helping runners and supporters get to the starting line on Sunday."

Bus, Tube and rail services will operate as normal and there will be extra buses running along the DLR network, which is used by an average of 350,000 people per day.

Image copyright Virgin Money London Marathon
Image caption The London Marathon will take place on Sunday

The strike follows a 48-hour walk-out last month over the same dispute which the RMT says is over the "fundamental issues" of workplace justice, fairness and the outsourcing of key functions.

An RMT spokesman said that "no significant progress" had been made on key issues despite several rounds of talks with KAD.

KAD said talks were continuing with the RMT at the government's Advisory, Conciliation and Arbitration Service (Acas) to "try to resolve the dispute" and avert the strike.

The company's managing director Abdellah Chajai said it was "making every effort to resolve the dispute" and that RMT was "showing little intent" to do so.

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