‘Carnage’ for commuters as major signal failure brings London rail stations to standstill

Train services delayed and cancelled in and out of London Victoria and London Bridge

Chiara Giordano
Wednesday 18 December 2019 21:35
Thousands stranded at London Victoria due to a 'major signal failure'

Thousands of commuters have been left stranded after major signalling problems brought one of the country’s busiest railway stations to a "standstill”.

The signal failure in East Croydon caused chaos in the capital on Wednesday night, with trains in and out of London Victoria delayed and cancellations until the end of the day.

Images posted on social media showed crowds of passengers on the station concourse, unable to catch their Southern, Southeastern and Gatwick Express trains.

Thameslink services out of London Bridge have also been affected by the problems.

Posting an image of commuters waiting behind a barrier held closed by a rail worker on Twitter, Jasmin Beckett described the scene as “Christmas carnage”.

Rob Broomby, a TV producer, who was stuck at Victoria, said it was the “worst transport chaos” he had seen.

He added: “There was a lot of good humour in the bar as people settled in for a long wait, but when the platform indicators began flashing on and off it felt more like a Christmas tree with dodgy wiring.”

Peter Kyle, Labour MP for Hove and Portslade, was caught up in the disruption at Victoria on Wednesday evening.

He described the central London hub as being “at a standstill” and apologised to those struggling to get home.

He tweeted: “I’m sorry to every passenger, I know there’s a lot more that needs sorting on this service, I’m fighting for that.

“You have been let down badly this evening.”

Network Rail apologised and advised people to find other routes if possible.

Victoria and London Bridge are Britain’s second and fourth busiest stations, carrying 75 million and 48 million passengers in 2017/18 respectively.

Additional reporting by Press Association.

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