THE RMT and TSSA unions have announced planned railway strikes for this month have been suspended in the wake of the Queen’s death.

Tens of thousands of railway workers were set to stage fresh strikes in a long-running dispute over pay, jobs and conditions on September 15 and 17.

Some 40,000 RMT members were due to participate across the UK.

In a statement following the announcement that the Queen had died, RMT general secretary Mick Lynch said: “RMT joins the whole nation in paying its respects to Queen Elizabeth.

“The planned railway strike action on September 15 and 17 is suspended.

“We express our deepest condolences to her family, friends and the country.”

News emerged of the Queen's ill health on Thursday afternoon, and her family rushed to Balmoral to be close to her.

At around 6.30pm her death was confirmed, with BBC broadcaster Huw Edwards delivering the news live on TV.

An image of the flag at Buckingham Palace was shown at half mast

In a statement, Buckingham Palace said: “The Queen died peacefully at Balmoral this afternoon.

“The King and The Queen Consort will remain at Balmoral this evening and will return to London tomorrow.”