Three hour train journey takes nine hours

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The Independent Online

About 30 passengers experienced the chaos on Britain's railways first-hand as they were forced to spend the night stranded on a train.

About 30 passengers experienced the chaos on Britain's railways first-hand as they were forced to spend the night stranded on a train.

They set off from London's St Pancras station at 10pm last night on what should have been a simple journey of less than three hours.

But a power failure on the line south of Bedford left them marooned on board the Midland Mainline operated train for four hours, before it finally moving as far as Kettering station.

The bleary-eyed passengers were eventually taken by bus - which took another two hours - to Nottingham, where they arrived at 7am today, nine hours after setting off.

The time taken for the journey highlights the problems people trying to use the country's railways network now face on a daily basis.

Before the speed restrictions imposed after the Hatfield train crash, the trip from London to Nottingham would normally have taken one hour and 45 minutes.

Midland Mainline spokesman Kevin Johnson said: "Two trains travelling into London and the one heading to Nottingham were stuck when the power failure left signals out of order for hours.

"By the time the fault was fixed the line near Kettering had been closed for essential track replacement work so the quickest way to get them home was by bus.

"We are really sorry that anybody travelling with us is experiencing extended journey times, but clearly this is too much."

All those on board will now be offered compensation for being delayed.

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