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Navin Shah GLA Brent & Harrow
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LU claim ticket office sales continue to fall

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By Martin Hoscik

With RMT union members expected to demonstrate outside City Hall this morning over planned ticket office closures, London Underground bosses have published new figures suggesting ticket office sales have fallen by 15 per cent during the last year.

The unions and LU are currently in dispute over plans to close ticket offices with transport bosses insisting rising levels of Oyster use mean fewer ticket office transactions are taking place.

Plans to close ticket offices were first announced by former-Mayor Ken Livingstone in June 2007. During 2008′s Mayoral election, Boris Johnson opposed the plans, signing a petition against the closures and making a manifesto pledge to stop them.

During the election Mayor Johnson wrote: “Ken Livingstone plans to close a large number of ticket offices at Tube stations, predominantly in outer London because he claims that the increase in Oyster use has made them surplus to requirements. However, what he has not taken into account is that local people feel it is important there is a manned ticket office at their station, as often there are not enough Oyster outlets in the local area.”

However earlier this year Transport for London unveiled similar plans to those previously condemned by the Mayor, leading to unions and political opponents accusing him of breaking his promise to Londoners.

Questioned over his u-turn by Labour Assembly Member Navin Shah at Mayor’s Question Time in March this year, Mayor Johnson claimed to have “no idea what the position of the previous Mayor was on this” and defended the closures.

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Hear Navin interviewed about the RMT Tube Workers' protest outside City Hall on 15 December here.

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15th December 2010