Heathrow Express strike 'to hit Champions League Final'

A Heathrow Express train at Paddington Station in London
Image caption Further strike action is scheduled for 24 June and in July on the Heathrow Express

Major disruption is expected for fans after the Champions' League final on Saturday because of strike action on the Heathrow Express.

Workers on the rail link are staging two strikes in a dispute over pay.

The Rail Maritime and Transport union said members will strike for 48 hours from 0340 BST Friday to 0340 BST Sunday and serious disruption is expected.

But the company said trains will run half-hourly but no trains will run before 0800 BST and after 2000 BST.

'Fair deal'

It is thought that Uefa employees and a number of Olympic officials are booked on to Heathrow Express trains for Saturday's Champions League final between Manchester United and Barcelona.

RMT general secretary Bob Crow said the union's dispute was with Heathrow Express and not with the International Olympic Committee or Uefa, adding that "all we are seeking to do is secure a fair pay deal for our members".

He said: "The fact that hundreds of dignitaries from the global sporting community are booked on Heathrow Express trains this weekend just shows that this is a prestigious, successful and profitable service built on the hard work of our members.

"All we want is for the company to recognise that in this pay round."

Heathrow Express said that it will run a half-hourly service on Friday and Saturday from 0800 BST to 2000 BST between Paddington Heathrow Airport Terminal 5 via Heathrow Central Terminals 1 and 3.

Managing director Richard Robinson said: "Our focus is to provide our customers with a regular service to and from the airport during this 48-hour period."

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