Workers at Crayford McDonald's staged their first ever strike in the UK on Monday in a dispute over pay and conditions.

Staff in Crayford and Cambridge walked out in a row over the use of zero-hours contracts and "inexplicably" low pay.

The Bakers, Food and Allied Workers Union said the strike was being well supported.

Members of other trade unions joined early-morning picket lines outside the two restaurants, while Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn offered his backing.

Dozens of people staged a picket outside the Crayford branch this morning from 6am. 

Lewis Baker, 27, is one of the employees who has been organising the strike. 

Speaking to News Shopper, he said: "We were striking to get our voices heard. Forming the union and coming together was a way for us to do that. 

"The reception has been amazing. We had around 150 people support us outside our store, lots of different local groups coming together including Mattew Pennycook. 

"We just hope that McDonald's recognise the union because it is not a nice place to work. We want them to hear what we are saying."


The workers are calling for a wage of at least £10 an hour and more secure working hours.

McDonald's said those taking action represented 0.01 per cent of its workforce, adding that the dispute was related to its internal grievance procedures.

BFAWU national president Ian Hodson said members of the public were offering their support to the workers.

"McDonald's has had countless opportunities to resolve grievances by offering workers a fair wage and acceptable working conditions," he said. 

"For far too long, workers in fast food restaurants such as McDonald's have had to deal with poor working conditions, drastic cuts to employee hours, and even bullying in the workplace - viewed by many as a punishment for joining a union,"

Mr Corbyn said: "Our party offers support and solidarity to the brave McDonald's workers, who are making history today.

"They are standing up for workers' rights by leading the first ever strike at McDonald's in the UK.

"Their demands - an end to zero-hours contracts by the end of the year, union recognition and a £10 per hour minimum wage - are just and should be met."

Mattew Pennycook, MP for Greenwich and Woolwich, supported the picket. 

He said: "Proud to join striking McDonald's workers in Crayford this morning and to support their demands for a #livingwage and union rights #McStrike."

McDonald's, which employs around 85,000 staff in the UK and one million worldwide, announced in April that workers would be offered a choice of flexible or fixed contracts with minimum guaranteed hours, saying that 86 per cent have chosen to stay on flexible contracts.

A company spokesman said: "We can confirm that, following a ballot process, the BFAWU has indicated that a small number of our people representing less than 0.01 per cent of our workforce are intending to strike in two of our 1,270 UK restaurants," he said.

"As per the terms of the ballot, the dispute is solely related to our internal grievance procedures and not concerning pay or contracts.

"As announced in April this year, together with our franchisees, we are providing our people with the option of a guaranteed hour contract, and all restaurants will have these contracts in place by the end of 2017.

"McDonald's UK and its franchisees have delivered three pay rises since April 2016; this has increased the average hourly pay rate by 15 per cent."