British trade unionist Bob Crowe dead

General Secretary of the Rail, and Maritime and Transport Union, and one of the United Kingdom’s foremost trade union leaders, Bob Crowe died on Tuesday in a hospital in London. Mr. Crowe was 51. He is reported to have died of an aneurysm followed by a heart attack.

A widely respected figure Mr. Crow led the tube strike last month against the plans by London Mayor Boris Johnson’s decision to close down ticket offices in London , a move that would have resulted in thousands of job losses. He won a settlement for the workers after a two-day strike that paralysed the most used transport system in the city.

There has been an outpouring of grief and shock at Mr. Crowe’s sudden death.

Mr. Johnson, who Mr. Crowe had clashed with during the Tube strike said: : "I am shocked. Bob Crow was a fighter and a man of character." He added: "Whatever our political differences, and there were many, this is tragic news.

"Bob fought tirelessly for his beliefs and for his members.

"There can be absolutely no doubt that he played a big part in the success of the tube, and he shared my goal to make transport in London an even greater success.’’

Joining the London underground as an apprentice track worker at the age of 16, Mr. Crowe soon got involved in union activities. He became leader of the RMT union in 2002.

The Respect MP George Galloway tweeted: "Bob Crow was a working-class hero. That's something to be."

In a statement, the RMT said: "It is with the deepest regret that RMT has to confirm that our general secretary Bob Crow sadly passed away in the early hours of this morning."

Manuel Cortes, leader of the TSSA rail union, who joined Mr. Crow during last month's tube strike, said: "Bob Crow was admired by his members and feared by employers, which is exactly how he liked it.’’

Under Mr. Crowe leadership, the membership of the RMT increased by more than 20,000 to 80,000.

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Printable version | Jan 23, 2021 1:56:01 PM |

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