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No honey pots at the end of Terminal Five

Sir, I write regarding recent articles about wage agreements on the Heathrow Terminal 5 contract.

The figures mentioned are nowhere near the true picture.

In my experience, the average take-home pay for travelling tradesmen is just over £600 a week, from which lodge has to be deducted - on average £80 per week (and rising).

The on-site canteen is not subsidised and a breakfast costs £4, plus two hot meals over £5.

Additional expenditure includes fuel costs to and from digs and home at the weekend - around £40 to £50 per week.

Most men also have a home to run and mortgages to pay, so this job is obviously not the honey pot the unions are making it out to be.

There is no weekend work, but from Monday to Friday, a typical working day involves leaving accommodation at 5.45 am. There is only one bus to the site at 6.20 am for the 7 am start.

To date there have been numerous problems with the buses, but inevitably these have been with the buses returning us to the car park at the end of the day.

We finish at 6.20 pm and get home by 7 pm, which equates to a 13-hour day, but I only get paid for 10 hours.

On site there are currently over 300 men having to share six showers and eight toilets.

Management is constantly moving the goal posts, and with each move the situation worsens. Since the job started, we are now on our third contract, and each has been worse than the last. For example, the top-up bonus was 17p an hour last week, down from £1.50.

Name and address withheld