TRAINS have been cancelled and speed restrictions put in place due to 'hot rails' on the tracks.

Great Western Railway has confirmed that rail track temperatures are set to jump past the 50 degree mark, leading to delays and cancellations into and out of London Paddington.

The restrictions have been put in place until 7pm and journeys are expected to take 10 to 15 minutes longer.

A GWR spokesperson said: “With temperatures in London set to exceed 30 degrees, the effect can bring the temperature of the rails to over 50 degrees, and we have been asked by Network Rail to drive more slowly as a result.

“We will continue to keep an eye on the situation, alongside Network Rail, and keep you updated throughout the day.”

Royal Borough Observer:

The railway lines in Reading. Photo: Mike Swift

Rail users are advised to check before they travel, to drink plenty of water, and are being asked to help staff keep a lookout for the more vulnerable making journeys today.

A spokesperson for Network Rail said: “Our modern rails are far more resistant to heat expansion and buckling than they used to be.

"However, a day this hot affects even our track, so we need to restrict speeds for safety."

The following services are expected to be cancelled to maintain the train timetable:

  • All Thames Valley branch lines to remain in branch operation but with no direct London services.
  • London Paddington to Bedwyn and return services will operate between Bedwyn and Reading only
  • London Paddington to Cheltenham Spa and return will operate between Swindon and Cheltenham Spa only
  • London Paddington to Oxford direct (calling Slough, Reading, Didcot and Oxford) and return services are cancelled. Passengers are advised to travel to Didcot for connecting services to Oxford.