Britain's civil servants went on strike for the first time on Tuesday (27 February). One?
Britain's civil servants went on strike for the first time on Tuesday (27 February). One of the immediate effects was the creation of the possibility of a "smugglers' paradise". Only a few of Britain's eight thousand customs officers reported for duty at ports and airports. So, travellers could stroll through customs without stopping to declare transistors, cameras and other bargains picked up abroad. Herdly anyone walked through the "Goods to Declare" exit at London's Heathrow Airport. Airport officials said ti was like a "smugglers' paradise". Only the police drugs squad kept a close watch on arrivals.
Because air traffic control assistants were on strike, about one third of arriving and departing flights through Heathrow Airport had to be cancelled.
Thousands of civil servants were on strike - against the Government's restraint on wage increases. Outside the offices of Government ministries in Whitehall, civil servants demonstrated and chanted for a twenty per cent pay rise - several times more than is allowed under Government wage policy.