The exact ways the rail strike will cripple the UK this week – as map reveals where disruption will hit the most | The Sun06/20/2022
BRITAIN will grind to a halt this week as a three-day strike cripples the railways.
The chaos will hit kids taking their GCSEs, festival-goers heading to Glastonbury and workers trying to get to the office.
But hard-line unions have doubled down on the biggest rail strike in a generation as they warned services will be slashed to 20 per cent of their normal frequency.
Passengers have been urged not to travel unless absolutely necessary.
Half the railway network will shut down on Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday.
It'll be the biggest walkout since the 1980s.
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The union has admitted it's causing the carnage to protect ancient rules which mean train staff only have to work 35 hours a week — the equivalent of seven hours a day.
Here's how it could affect you.
Network Rail says no passenger services will serve locations including Penzance in Cornwall, Bournemouth in Dorset, Swansea in South Wales, and Blackpool, Lancashire.
There will also be no passenger trains running north from Glasgow or Edinburgh.
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Open lines include the West Coast Main Line from London to Scotland via locations such as Birmingham and Manchester.
Lines will only be open between 7.30am and 6.30pm, meaning services will start later and finish earlier than usual.
For example, the last train to Leeds on strike days is 3.05pm. Final services will depart to Edinburgh at 2pm, and to Cardiff at 4.27pm.
Passengers "who must travel" are urged to "plan ahead" to ensure they can make the last train home.
Festivals and sporting events
Glastonbury Festival takes place for the first time in three years from Wednesday.
Around 200,000 revellers will be heading for Somerset, most of whom would usually travel by train to Castle Cary.
They may still have a reasonable journey, with chiefs at Great Western Railway saying some trains will run between the station and London Paddington.
However, it's likely services will change, and there could be delays.
Party-goers are instead trying to book coaches, and it's feared there could be far more traffic than usual around the site, the Daily Mail reports.
Meanwhile, England is set to play its third Test match against New Zealand at Headingly in Leeds from June 23 to 27.
And the UK Athletics Championships run from Friday to Sunday in Manchester.
On Friday and Saturday, Elton John and the Rolling Stones will perform at London's Hyde Park. Saturday is the third day of strikes, meaning Stones fans will face a particularly hard time.
GCSEs and A-Levels
Mums and dads who put their children on trains to school are already desperately trying to find other ways to get their kids to exams.
Teens will sit GCSE history and dance tomorrow. German, religious studies and maths A-Levels will also take place.
On Thursday, the second day of strikes, chemistry A-Levels and physics GCSEs are planned.
In total, however, 17 GCSE and 22 A-Level tests could be disrupted.
In order to mitigate the problems, examiners can begin 30 minutes late, or even move the tests altogether.
Professor Sir Stephen Powis has urged anyone considering skipping appointments to find another way to get in.
"I am urging those who have appointments booked in to plan ahead and look at alternative options for getting to their GP practice or hospital if needed," he said.
London hospitals are likely to be hit particularly hard.
That's because driving in the capital can be difficult, even without the extra pressure on the roads network – and parking spaces are already at a premium.
Health Secretary Sajid Javid has said the walkouts will "put patients at risk".
Both London Ambulance Service Trust and South Central Ambulance Service Foundation Trust have moved to the highest level of alert.
The warning shows they're under huge pressure already.
The Centre for Economics and Business Research says strikes will cost the economy around £91million in staff absences alone.
More than 250,000 people won't be able to get to work.
London will face the biggest hit, with a loss to the economy of £52million, it found.
Other estimates suggest the cost to the UK economy overall could be as much as £450million.
And UK Hospitality chief Kate Nicholls said the strikes will cost the tourism, leisure and theatre industries an astonishing £1billion.
She added: “This week’s strikes will add misery to many hospitality workers and businesses already struggling to make ends meet.”
Even those who get behind the wheel will be impacted by the strikes.
Stagecoach says Megabus bookings for next week have soared by 85 per cent already.
The AA says many roads will be busier – although in a grimly ironic bit of 'good news', rising fuel prices are keeping more people at home anyway.
Brits are already facing misery at airports across the country, with huge delays and cancelled flights.
But those hoping to get to the airport by train are urged to consider another way to travel.
London airports have warned of severe delays and reduced timetables.
There'll be no Gatwick Express services at all on strike days.
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The Stansted Express and Heathrow Express services will run just two trains an hour, with much later first and earlier last trains.
Eurostar is running a reduced timetable next week and has cancelled 41 trains between London and Paris and Brussels and Amsterdam.
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