Industry mourns death of RMT leader Bob Crow

Industry leaders have been paying tribute to RMT union leader Bob Crow who died suddenly in the early hours of this morning at the age of 52.

RMT confirmed the death of its general secretary in a short statement on its website earlier today.

Since then, social media channels have been flooded with statements from rail industry organisations and other trade unions praising Crow’s dedication to improving pay and conditions for RMT members.

Martin Griffiths, chairman of the Rail Delivery Group, said: “Bob Crow was rightly recognised as one of the rail industry’s most passionate voices, who championed the crucial role played by staff in delivering a safe service to passengers.

“The whole industry will be shocked and saddened to hear of his untimely death. Our thoughts are with his family and loved ones at this sad time.”

Transport Secretary Patrick McLoughlin said in a statement: “I am very saddened to hear that Bob Crow has passed away, and my thoughts are with his family, friends and colleagues.

“Like many, I will remember him as a passionate voice for safety on the railways and the wellbeing of those who work on them.

“While we may not always have agreed on how to run our railways, he was a powerful advocate who led his organisation from the front and made an important contribution to the debate around the future of rail services in this country.”

TUC general secretary Frances O’Grady said: “This is shocking news. Bob was an outstanding trade unionist, who tirelessly fought for his members, his industry and the wider trade union movement.

“He was always a good friend and comrade to me. We will miss him, and our thoughts are with his family and the RMT at this difficult time.”

Reacting to the news on Twitter, London Mayor Boris Johnson, a regular opponent of RMT industrial action, said: “We may have differed politically but he was a man of character who fought tirelessly for his members.”