Some members of the bank, including staff from security and maintenance departments, staged a picket outside the Bank of England’s central London headquarters on Tuesday. A few of them were wearing masks of Governor Mark Carney.
The three-day strike will overlap with an interest rate decision on Thursday and involves maintenance and security staff at the 323-year-old bank.
About 150 people work in the departments are affected by the stoppage.
Strikers carried signs reading “Bank of England staff want fair pay” decrying their pay rise, mocking it as “derisory.”
John McDonnell, the main opposition Labour Party’s top economic official, attended the protest and called for the bank to set an example to employers by raising their wages.
An official with the Unite trade union, Peter Kavanagh, said the workers had “been left with no choice but to take industrial action because they are facing another year of having to endure a pay cut imposed upon them.”
The dispute arose over a 1 percent increase in pay offer from the central bank in March. The rate of consumer price inflation in England stands at 2.6 percent, meaning that workers will be facing a real terms pay cut. The Bank of England has a total workforce of around 4,000.
The central bank noted that the number of strikers is small and says it will “continue to operate as normal during this period.”
“The Bank has been in talks with Unite up to and including today and remains ready to continue those talks at any time,” a Bank spokesperson said in a statement on Tuesday.