London Paddington: line problems cause rush-hour chaos

Commuters and airline passengers using London Paddington station are once again facing long delays and cancellations due to engineering problems.

A broken stretch of track between Ealing Broadway and West Ealing has now been repaired, but trains and crews are out of position as a result of earlier cancellations.

Paddington is GWR’s London terminus, serving Bristol, South Wales, Devon, Cornwall and the Cotswolds.

Passengers are staring blankly at departure boards which are listing the many delays cancellations. Half the number of Heathrow Express trains are running, while many inter-city services are delayed or cancelled.

Carl Morgan had travelled from Doncaster to London but faced problems on the final part of his journey, to Slough. He told The Independent: “Some delays as usual, but it’s what we’ve come to expect.

“Trying to keep the lines open is where they need better organisation.”

When trains finally arrive, some travellers are sprinting for appointments. 

Three weeks ago hundreds of trains were cancelled after another problem just west of Paddington, when the overhead lines were shredded during a test run.

The line between Exeter and Newton Abbot has been closed all morning because of “strong winds and high tides”. Once the poor weather passes, Network Rail engineers will inspect the railway before opening the line.

Because of a strike on the Central Line of the London Underground, the line between Paddington and Ealing Broadway is under extra pressure, as Tube commuters switch to mainline services.

Next move? Passengers at Heathrow might end up taking two Tube trains between terminals (Simon Calder)

Many services between Paddington and Heathrow were cancelled or delayed. The shuttle between Terminal 4 and the central area is operating only every 30 minutes, with the suggestion that passengers take a complicated journey via Hatton Cross on the Piccadilly Line of the Underground.

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