UNIONS have threatened the biggest strikes in 50 years with nearly two million teachers and doctors warning of massive walkouts.
It is feared the nation could be brought to its knees in a new "winter of discontent" as a result of the strikes.
Teachers, nurses and coffin makers are among the two million workers warning that they will stage walk-outs over pay and conditions.
The dire warning of mass strike action came as the TUC opened its delayed conference in Brighton today.
A call for coordinated industrial action — stopping short of a general strike — is also set to be passed tomorrow when militant trade unions hold their annual rally tomorrow.
If the vote is backed, it would mean essential public sector workers would be among those to join the mass strike in what would be another blow to Britain.
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After a tumultuous few days for the country, the strikes would be the most militant showdown with the government since the 1970s.
155,000 postal workers, represented by the CWU, are already in the midst of industrial action, holding a total of 19 days of strikes up until Christmas.
Up to 1.9million public sector workers are set to strike or be balloted in the coming months, including Unite, Unison and GMB union members.
Unite general secretary Sharon Graham yesterday said: "I think there could be up to a million people on strike very, very soon. We could see multiple strikes this winter."
While in an angry attack against the Government, TUC general secretary Frances O'Grady demanded the PM was sacked and a general election was called.
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O'Grady warned the TUC was already co-ordinating industrial action, adding: "When workers are left with no choice but to vote for strike action for decent pay, I say: bring it on."
It comes as the union representing teachers has revealed more than half of headteachers were in favour of striking amid simmering levels of "anger and despair" among school staff.
For the first time in its 125-year history, the headteachers’ union will ballot its members for strike action in a row over pay.
The NAHT’s general secretary said he had told education secretary Kit Malthouse that the two parties are “now officially in dispute” over wages and funding.
Paul Whiteman added: “I can only urge him and the government to listen and take urgent action."
Mr Whiteman announced the historic ballot on formal industrial action during a speech at a conference on Tuesday.
He said: “Schools are caught is a vicious spiral. Insufficient pay has contributed to a recruitment and retention crisis. And the failure to fund even the insufficient award this year means that heart-breaking cuts to services will have to be made.”
Meanwhile, coffin makers vowed to join with the strike action, bringing production to a "complete stop".
About 50 workers at the Co-op factory based at Bogmoor Place, Glasgow, have rejected a pay offer which their union, Unite, said is a "real-terms" pay cut.
Co-op Funeralcare is one of the UK's biggest funeral directors. Employees will walk out from October 31 every day until November 7 when action will conclude.
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The original Winter of Discontent took place in the late 1970s, when both private and public sectors demanded pay rises.
A government spokesman said ministers “will do whatever it can to minimise disruption”.
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