Drivers warned of M25 traffic chaos with long delays as motorway workers vote to strike over pay

M25 diversion route
The Unite union workers provide maintenance for the entire M25
Hemma Visavadia

By Hemma Visavadia

Published: 14/03/2024

- 09:20

Updated: 14/03/2024

- 09:25

The Barnet, Uxbridge, Swanley, Epping and Dartford routes will be affected

Experts are urging drivers to prepare themselves and expect delays on the M25 in the near future as 150 maintenance workers announce strike action over pay, affecting some of the busiest travel routes.

The workers operate from depots based at Barnet, Uxbridge, Swanley, Epping and Dartford with strike action predicted to cause serious disruption to journey times.

The Unite union workers provide maintenance for the entire M25 including the upkeep of 117 miles stretch of road.

Through Balfour subsidiary, Connect Plus Services, the workers are responsible for operating and maintaining the M25 network, including all adjoining trunk and slip roads.

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roads works and delays on M25

The workers have voted for strike action over an 'unfair' pay offer of 3.4 per cent


The workers have voted for strike action over an unfair pay offer of 3.4 per cent which they state is not in line with the rate of inflation at 4.9 per cent.

Unite workers were encouraged to vote in February with action now pending, although the strike dates have not been announced yet.

Sharon Graham, Unite general secretary said: “Providing these workers with a fair pay rise would not even dent Balfour Beatty's huge profits.

“Balfour Beatty is hugely profitable - its pay offer is all about greed not need. Unite will be backing our members 100 per cent during the forthcoming strike action.”

Balfour saw revenues increase to £9.6billion last year, up from £8.9billion in 2022.

Leo Quinn, group chief executive at Balfour Beatty, said at the time the high revenues were against a challenging economic backdrop.

Phil Silkstone, regional officer at Unite, added: “The inconvenience and delays caused by strike action to M25 travellers sits squarely at the door of Balfour Beatty.

“It has had every opportunity to put forward a reasonable offer but has repeatedly refused to do so. Balfour Beatty must swiftly return to talks with Unite and table an acceptable pay deal.”

Responding to the impending strike action, a Balfour Beatty spokesperson said the company was disappointed by the decision, but wanted to reassure customers.

Speaking to GB News, they added: “We remain committed to working with them to reach an appropriate outcome, and would like to reassure travellers that suitable contingency plans are in place to minimise any potential disruption”.

This weekend, drivers are being warned to seek alternative routes as the M25 undergoes vital maintenance and closes popular junctions.

The closure will affect a five-mile stretch of the M25 in both directions between junctions 10 (A3 Wisley) and 11 (A320 Chertsey Interchange) from 9pm on Friday, March 15 to 6am on Monday, March 18.


M25 motorwayNational Highways are warning drivers of long delays GETTY

UK construction work accounted for £3billion worth of revenue which included the important maintenance of the M25 which orbits London and acts as an important transport link into the capital.

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