The launch of the all-night Tube service on the London Underground will be delayed, Transport for London (TfL) has confirmed. The 24-hour service was due to begin on 12 September on multiple lines.
The service – which is ready to launch from a technical standpoint – has been postponed until "later in the autumn" to make way for further talks with unions. Sticking points over pay and staff rotas remain after two strikes were called off earlier this week as a "gesture of goodwill".
"Further to the progress made in recent days with the trade unions and the suspension of strike action, we believe we are not far from an agreement that protects the work-life balance of our employees and is affordable, sustainable and fair," London Underground managing director Nick Brown said. "As such, we have decided to defer the introduction of Night Tube to allow more time for those talks to conclude. Our objective is to reach an agreement that ends this dispute and delivers the Night Tube for Londoners this autumn."
Two further Tube strikes, which are set to heap more travel chaos for commuters have been planned for 8 and 10 September if an agreement is not reached. In a statement, London Underground has said that it "will continue to work with unions to reach agreement that is affordable, sustainable and fair and which delivers launch of Night Tube this autumn."