Hopes of ending a crippling strike at a state-owned.

British Leyland, a state-owned auto maker, received a rude shock yesterday when the strike leaders, who were thought to favor a peace formula, suddenly rejected it.

Leaders of 3,000 toolmakers, who have been on unofficial strike since Feb. 18, had accepted the formula Wednesday.

But strike leader Roy Fraser yesterday said that until management recognizes the toolmakers' own negotiating committee and discussess wages with it, "We cannot recommend a return to work."

If the toolmakers follow their committee's advice and the strike goes on, there are fears that many of Leyland's factories will close, throwing thousands out of work and cutting operations at some 400 dependent companies in northern England. The strike has meant a loss of production so far worth nearly $170 million.

Meanwhile, Britain's National Union of Mineworker's president Joe Gormley warned there is no chance the miners will vote for another phase of wage restraints.

The current social contract restraining wage increases expires July 31 and the government is seeking another agreement.

Gormerly also announced that the union executive council agreed to accept a 5 per cent pay boost starting March 1. He refused to accept the 12-month rule under the present pay policy that would stop the miners from asking another raise until next March.