Dover-Calais ferries to be suspended due to French strike
Ferries between Dover and Calais will be disrupted by a national strike in France on Thursday. P&O Ferries said services to and from the French port will be suspended from 07:00 GMT for nine hours.
Dover will still be open with Dunkerque services running as normal but travellers are being urged to allow extra time for journeys. The national stoppages will involve transport, school and health workers.
P&O said it could not anticipate the extent of disruption to services, adding that “it is possible that our wider operations could be affected during the day”.
When ferries resume after strike action ends at 16:00 GMT, there will be a shuttle service between Dover and Calais until all traffic is cleared.
Danish ferry company DFDS has told customers due to travel from Dover to Calais on Thursday that alternative arrangements would be made via Dunkerque.
Irish Ferries said that while crossings from Calais are affected, drivers with freight will still be able to access that port and “check-in as normal”.
The strike will also affect Eurostar rail services – a reduced number of trains will run on 19 January due to staff shortages.
There will be cancellations between London and Paris and on services connecting London to Lille, Brussels, Rotterdam and Amsterdam.
There will also be a reduced Eurostar service on Friday.
Dover was the scene of lengthy queues last July for travellers heading for the port and the Eurotunnel terminal.
UK and French officials could not agree on the cause of the disruption – some UK critics blamed a lack of French border staff but some French politicians said extra checks post-Brexit and a lack of capacity at the port were behind the delays.
The AA motoring group issued its first amber traffic warning, as thousands of families faced gridlock while attempting to travel.g staged to protest about plans to raise the official pension age.
In other news – Ambulance staff and nurses to strike on the same day
Ambulance workers are to join nurses in taking strike action on 6 February in England and Wales in what will be the biggest NHS walkout in this dispute.
The GMB announced four new stoppages for ambulance staff – one of which coincides with a nurses’ strike date. It is the first time both ambulance staff and the Royal College of Nursing (RCN) have acted on the same day. Learn more