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Evening Standard
Evening Standard
Lydia Chantler-Hicks

Massive disruption to trains between London Kings Cross and the north after thieves steal cables

Trains running between London and the north were hit with massive disruptions on Monday after thieves stole vital signalling cables.

The cable theft happened outside Sheffield between Doncaster and nearby Retford at around 10pm Sunday, and National Rail warned “major disruption” was expected to last until the end of Monday.

In an update on Monday afternoon, Network Rail said it hoped normal services would resume around 6pm.

A spokesperson said: “Some repairs have been made already but further damage was found during testing. Working to repair this and get trains moving normally again as soon as we can.”

Trains running between London Kings Cross, Scotland and the north of England - operated by four separate rail firms - are affected by the vandalism.

They include Grand Central services running between Bradford Interchange and London Kings Cross; Hull Trains running between Hull and Kings Cross; LUMO trains between Edinburgh and Kings Cross; and LNER services between Edinburgh, Newcastle, York, Leeds and Kings Cross.

National Rail says the cable theft means fewer trains are able to run on the lines, meaning trains may be cancelled, revised, or by delayed by up to 40 minutes.

Passengers are advised to check rail provider websites before travelling.

Some have expressed frustration at the situation on social media.

One Twitter user named Tom Bridges wrote: “Chaos on @LNER today due to cable theft. People travelling in awful conditions. Anyone found guilty of cable theft should receive a punishment commensurate with the huge social cost this crime causes.”

British Transport Police has confirmed it is investigating the theft.

A spokesperson said: “Officers attended the line in Doncaster following a report from rail workers at 11.37am today (December 5) stating railway signalling cable had been stolen from the location. No one has been arrested in connection and enquiries are ongoing.”

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