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Ice-affected Kent trains gradually coming back, Southeastern now says

By Sam Lennon

Kent trains are slowly returning after the service was crippled by ice.

Services for areas such as Ashford, Gravesend and Dartford are returning and it rail workers are striving to return more.

All the county's trains had been stopped earlier today because of freezing rain and ice on the tracks following a week of mayhem from the Beast of the East winds from Siberia.

Further disruption to train services. picture Google Images.
Further disruption to train services. picture Google Images.

Trains are now back on three routes with some delays.

These are Charing Cross to Ashford via Tonbridge, Cannon Street to Gravesend and Charing Cross to Dartford.

Services such as those east of Ashford still have to be brought back.

Southeastern says it will take time for full restoration even with temperatures expected to rise over the weekend.

But it says its staff and colleagues at Network Rail are battling to bring back a normal service.

The train company have given travel advice going into Saturday.

A spokesman said: "For today we are advising our passengers not to travel wherever possible to avoid being caught up in any disruption.

If you are travelling this afternoon or this evening, check how your service is operating first before setting out, travel earlier if possible and allow extra time for your journey.

“Looking ahead the weather forecast is for temperatures to rise over the weekend, but this week's severe weather has damaged a number of trains, and we will be undertaking extra checks on all of our routes to ensure that they are safe for trains to run.

“We will do all we can to keep the network running to as near a normal timetable as possible from Sunday and into next week.

"We'll have extra teams on the ground over the weekend at key locations across the network, working hard to reduce the risk of further disruption as the colder weather begins to retreat.

“While we work to restore a full service over the coming days, there may be some short notice cancellations and changes to the length of trains on our routes as we make repairs.

"We advise our passengers to check before they travel, and sincerely thank them for their patience while we are get trains moving.”

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