28 December 2014
Last updated at 02:05
Reduced rail services are expected to run from some London stations later, after overrunning engineering works caused major disruption on Saturday.
Thousands of passengers endured widespread cancellations after London’s King’s Cross was closed, while Paddington was shut for several hours.
The Office of Rail Regulation has said it will investigate the disruption.
Network Rail said passengers had been let down and extra resources had been brought in to complete the work.
Transport Secretary Patrick McLoughlin has demanded answers from Network Rail, which runs the UK’s railway network.
Track replacement work
Robin Gisby, managing director at Network Rail, said he was “deeply sorry” for the delays, but defended the decisions that shut down King’s Cross and caused long queues at nearby Finsbury Park.
“We’ve let a lot of people down today, I’m afraid, and I can only apologise for that,” he said.
He said engineers had been working “tirelessly” to complete the track replacement work, adding that “extra resources have been brought in to ensure the work is completed for the morning”.
However, train operators have warned the engineering works will continue to disrupt some services on Sunday.
East Coast Trains said it expected to run an amended timetable in and out of King’s Cross, but warned services would be “extremely busy”.
First Great Western said disruption at Paddington would continue until 09:00 GMT on Sunday. It has already said that those with tickets dated for 27 December would be able to use them on Sunday and Monday or would be entitled to a refund if they chose not to travel.
The overrunning work between King’s Cross and Finsbury Park is part of a £200m Christmas investment programme.
Cheryl Oxley, who was planning to travel to Bradford, spoke about her aborted journey from Finsbury Park.
“I was standing in the bitter cold trying to work out if any of the destination options would get me close to Leeds or Bradford.
“I overheard I could get a train to Peterborough and change there and there was a Peterborough train on the screen but then that never materialised.”
The shut down of King’s Cross caused chaotic scenes at Finsbury Park, which passengers had been advised to use in its place.
Finsbury Park station was temporarily closed following police advice, as “significant crowds” gathered on the platforms.
Trains coming into the capital were halted for long periods while waiting for a platform to become free at Finsbury Park.
Sara Nelson, from watchdog Passenger Focus, said the disruption was “extremely frustrating for passengers”.
Meanwhile, a spokesman for the Office of Rail Regulation said: “The immediate priority is for Network Rail to ensure disrupted parts of the railways are back up and running again for passengers as soon as possible.
“Network Rail, working with the rest of the industry, must learn lessons and prevent problems like this happening again.”
The engineering work was taking place between King’s Cross and Finsbury Park
Passengers complained about a lack of information
Finsbury Park station was temporarily closed following police advice
Transport Secretary Mr McLoughlin said the situation on Saturday had been “totally unacceptable”.
“I will be asking Network Rail to set out what went wrong and how they can learn lessons, but its priority must be to get services running into Kings Cross as well as Paddington,” he said.
Shadow transport secretary Michael Dugher said it was “unacceptable disruption, just as people try and get home after Christmas”.
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