Londonderry man helps grind London to a standstill

A photo of Steve Hedley (left) with the late Bob Crow above a picture of a Cumann na mBan mural in the Bogside.

A photo of Steve Hedley (left) with the late Bob Crow above a picture of a Cumann na mBan mural in the Bogside.

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One of the public faces of the tube strike that brought the London underground to a standstill this week is a Celtic-supporting republican from Londonderry.

Steve Hedley, Senior Assistant General Secretary at the Rail, Maritime and Transport (RMT) union, which has led the strike, was a recent candidate in the ballot to replace the late Bob Crow as boss of the rail union.

Although he now lives in London he was born in Londonderry and describes ‘Derry, Ireland’ as his home town on his social media profile.
Mr Hedley, who has described himself as a militant trade unionist, recently posted photographs of a Cumann na mBan mural in Gartan Square in Londonderry’s Bogside.

He has also posted slogans and posters of 1916 leader James Connolly.

And during the recent gay marriage referendum campaign in the Republic of Ireland, Mr Hedley posted images in favour of a yes vote.

One was a rainbow-coloured picture of the island of Ireland with the slogan, ‘Tiocfaidh Ár nGrá - Our love will come,’ imposed on top.

Mr Hedley claims to have been a victim of blacklisting by employers and during the recent RMT leadership election claims to have been the victim of anti-Irish slurs because he is from Londonderry.

He has advised the ex-pat newspaper, The Irish Post: “People have been cracking Irish jokes, I have been called a Fenian b******, and people have been putting it around that I am in the IRA and not to vote for me because I am a Provo.

“I am really shaken up by it and I am quite flabbergasted.”

In the interview last year he said: “I have been a member of the RMT for 26 years and when I stood for assistant general secretary there was none of this.”