Delays for rail passengers after line problems at Tallington

Damage caused to overhead cabling on the rail lines near Tallington
Damage caused to overhead cabling on the rail lines near Tallington
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There are still short delays for rail passengers after overhead wire problems at Tallington yesterday but trains are running.

Trains are now running on the line between Peterborough to Grantham after Network Rail engineers carried out overnight repairs and got three of the four lines fully open by 7am this morning (Tuesday).

The fast line towards London is also open, but only to diesel trains. Because of this services have been delayed by about 15 minutes because of the congestion.

There are still expected to be delays until tomorrow morning. Network Rail will continue to carry out repairs overnight.

Yesterday (Monday) more than 30,000 East Coast passengers were affected by the major delays after the overhead wires, which Network Rail is responsible for, came down onto the tracks at Tallington.

Network Rail said early indications suggest that the broken wires were caused by a design fault which the company says was not detectable in advance.

The A1175 Stamford to Deeping road was also closed at the Tallington level crossing for two hours because of the fault.

Trains between Peterborough and Grantham were suspended at about midday yesterday and remained closed for the rest of the day.

Two trains were trapped on the line.

One of the trapped trains was stopped across the road at Tallington, causing the traffic delays.

This is the third time this year that East Coast services have been severely disrupted due to overhead line problems.

On August 29, two miles of wires came down at Gamston, near Retford, Nottinghamshire and on February 19, a kilometre of overhead power line collapsed onto the tracks at St Neots in Cambridgeshire.

East Coast, which operates services on the line, have been accepting any unused tickets bearing yesterday’s date, for travel today.

Network Rail aims to complete repairs overnight tonight: as a result East Coast’s 9.15pm Newcastle to London service will be replaced by a coach service between Grantham and Peterborough, with an additional train service completing the journey between Peterborough, Stevenage and London King’s Cross.

East Coast managing director Karen Boswell said on Monday: “This incident has been extremely frustrating for our customers, and I want to say sorry to everyone whose journey was delayed, or who was inconvenienced today.

“This is the latest in a series of incidents related to the infrastructure on the East Coast Main Line – and currently, overhead line failures are the biggest cause of delays.”

Almost 90 East Coast services had to be cancelled.

The most severely delayed train, the 11am London King’s Cross to Edinburgh service, was passing Tallington at the moment when the overhead power lines failed.

A rescue locomotive was attached to the train and as soon as Network Rail cleared the line, the service resumed its journey north.

But the hired-in locomotive also failed at Dunbar, and a replacement had to be brought from Edinburgh to enable the train to complete its journey at 22.41, seven hours and 20 minutes behind schedule.

East Coast said any customers whose journeys were delayed yesterday who wish to claim compensation can visit the Delay Repay scheme. Full terms and application forms are available from staffed stations on the East Coast route, and can be downloaded from its website

East Coast is urging passengers travelling today to check before setting out, either on its website or by calling National Rail Enquiries on 08457 484950.

East Coast’s social media team is also keeping passengers informed via its Twitter service @eastcoastuk.