Next week’s planned Tube strike has been suspended following talks between London Underground and the RMT union.
The 48 hour walk-out was due to be held in protest at plans to close ticket offices and axe 960 jobs.
London Underground says the ticket offices are being used by ever declining numbers of passengers due to the popularity of Oyster and predicts that the introduction of contactless fares will further reduce face to face ticket sales.
However the union says cuts in the number of station staff threaten passenger safety and will make it harder for mobility-impaired and other vulnerable passengers to complete their journey as fewer staff will be available to help them.
Speaking to journalists on Thursday morning, Tube MD Mike Brown defended the closures, branding ticket offices were a from the Victorian era and insisting it was right to embrace new technology.
Brown pointed to the fact that a million contactless journeys were made in the first week of the service launching on the Tube last month as evidence that the public was willing to embrace technological change.
He also repeated past assurances that he would never agree to unstaffed stations or reduce staffing levels to a point where they degraded passenger experience.
Announcing the suspension of next weeks strike, RMT General Secretary Mick Cash said LU had agreed to reduce the number of job losses and agreed to guarantee the current salary and conditions to any staff with medical restrictions who are moved to new posts.
He commented: “The substantial improvements we have agreed allow us to move forwards but the Union’s core opposition to the austerity-led cuts on London Underground has not shifted an inch and we remain vigilant to further developments and their impact.”
However LU denied suggestions it had made concessions, insisting that it had simply provided “some basic clarity”.
Chief Operating Officer Phil Hufton said: “Nothing positive would be achieved through this strike action and this threat had no logic to it what so ever apart from attempting to disrupt hard working Londoners and their members losing two days pay.
“By simply continuing to talk without imposing unnecessary threats is obviously the best solution, which is recognised by the other trades unions.
“We have adhered to every single one of the commitments we made to our staff, including delivering on our guarantee of no compulsory redundancies and offering a job for anyone who wants to stay with us with no loss of pay.”