Delays for road and rail travellers due to flooding and late-running engineering work


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The Independent Online

Road and rail travellers endured another bleak mid-winter morning rush-hour today.

Flooded highways and rail lines, over-running engineering work and train staff unavailability all added to the gloom of a dark, wet, late-December journey to work.

Passengers travelling with the Southeastern train company suffered a double whammy of ill fortune.

First, services were disrupted due to the late finish of engineering work between Sole Street and Rochester in Kent.

Then, train crew unavailability led to problems for early-morning Southeastern travellers.

The Rochester work meant diversions and alterations, while buses had to replace trains between Meopham, Sole Street and Strood.

Passengers with East Midlands Trains and Greater Anglia also suffered today after a signalling problem led to delays of up to 60 minutes to rush-hour trains travelling through Norwich.

In the north of England, another signalling problem - this one caused by vandalism - at Hough Green in Cheshire led to delays between Liverpool Lime Street and Manchester Oxford Road via Birchwood.

The disruption was expected to last until around 1.30pm.

First TransPennine Express and East Midlands Trains were providing buses to take passengers between Birchwood and Newton-Le-Willows.

A freight train derailment yesterday at Barrow-upon-Soar in the East Midlands continued to cause disruption today.

Trains were unable to call at Barrow-upon-Soar, and buses were running between Loughborough and Barrow-upon-Soar to connect with trains

Trains between East Midlands Parkway and Leicester/Peterborough were likely to be delayed.

Flooding continued to impact on West Country services, although the line between Exeter St Davids and Tiverton Parkway was expected to reopen some time today.

But a number of routes in Cornwall, Devon, Somerset and the Bristol area were still being disrupted due to flooding.

Many roads were flooded, with Worcestershire particularly badly hit yet again. Among towns in the county with flooded roads were Worcester, Upton on Severn, Bromsgrove and Fladbury.

A landslip closed a route in Rothbury in Northumberland, while Brading on the Isle of Wight and Petersfield in Hampshire had flooded roads.

There was also flooding on the A51 at Weston in Staffordshire, while a road in Meir Heath, Staffordshire, was closed due to a fallen tree.

Sections of the A27 at Chichester and at Lancing in West Sussex were hit by flooding, as was White Way in Alfriston, East Sussex.

In East Yorkshire, Front Street in Burton Fleming was closed due to flooding, while high water levels also meant the closure of part of Mill Lane in Stutton, North Yorkshire.

Part of the A57 at Dunham on Trent in Nottinghamshire was closed due to the floods.

In Berkshire, the Sonning Bridge road was closed due to the water levels, while in Oxfordshire places affected by closed roads included Oxford city, Sutton Courtenay and Church Hanborough.