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New £150m Caledonian Sleeper train reaches London more than three hours late after signal problems

The new Caledonian Sleeper service arrived in London more than three hours late following signalling problems on the line – and the service going in the opposite direction suffered from power cuts and blocked lavatories.

The new carriages in the £150 million fleet of trains made their debut on Sunday night on the Lowlander route between Glasgow and London.

But the train from Glasgow to London Euston arrived at 10.27am on Monday instead of the scheduled arrival time of 7.07am following signalling issues. 

The Caledonian Sleeper from Glasgow to London was launched to much fanfare but arrived in London three hours late

And the service going in the opposite direction suffered from power cuts and blocked lavatories

And the service going in the opposite direction suffered from power cuts and blocked lavatories

The new carriages in the £150 million fleet of trains made their debut on Sunday night on the Lowlander route between Glasgow and London

The new carriages in the £150 million fleet of trains made their debut on Sunday night on the Lowlander route between Glasgow and London

But the train from Glasgow to London Euston arrived at 10.27am on Monday instead of the scheduled arrival time of 7.07am following signalling issues. Above: Ryan Flaherty, the managing director of the Caledonian sleeper service, shows off one of the revamped cabins

But the train from Glasgow to London Euston arrived at 10.27am on Monday instead of the scheduled arrival time of 7.07am following signalling issues. Above: Ryan Flaherty, the managing director of the Caledonian sleeper service, shows off one of the revamped cabins

As well as being late, the service was beset by problems on board too – the coffee machine broke, the butter at breakfast ran out, and some passengers waited for two hours for a bag of crisps, the Telegraph reported. 

The train going in the opposite direction also had problems; there were power cuts, the lavatories blocked, and the food ran out. 

Michael Harrison, who was on the Glasgow service, wrote angrily online: ‘It’s hideously late, no reasons given; it’s cost me a crucial appointment and potentially a significant part of my employment.

‘Four hours to reach Edinburgh from Glasgow. Eight-nine hours later and we’re only halfway to London… we’re still faffing about in the Midlands having spent the whole night on a snails-pace tour of the north east.’

Ryan Flaherty, Serco’s managing director for Caledonian Sleeper, said: ‘We apologise to guests affected by delays to our services last night.

‘These were as a result of signalling problems across the network.

‘We are engaging with Network Rail to understand why these issues occurred.’

Network Rail said there was also an issue with the train itself.

A Network Rail spokesman said: ‘A signalling fault near Carstairs caused significant delays to trains on Sunday, including the sleeper services.

‘Our engineers were on site quickly to find and repair the fault, however, the complex nature of the issue meant it was several hours before full repairs were completed.

‘We apologise to all those passengers who had their journeys disrupted.’

As well as being late, the service was beset by problems on board too - the coffee machine broke, the butter at breakfast ran out, and some passengers waited for two hours for a bag of crisps

As well as being late, the service was beset by problems on board too – the coffee machine broke, the butter at breakfast ran out, and some passengers waited for two hours for a bag of crisps

The train going in the opposite direction also had problems; there were power cuts, the lavatories blocked, and food ran out

The train going in the opposite direction also had problems; there were power cuts, the lavatories blocked, and food ran out

Scottish Secretary David Mundell, Michael Matheson MSP, and Serco's Ryan Flaherty on board the Caledonian Sleeper

Scottish Secretary David Mundell, Michael Matheson MSP, and Serco’s Ryan Flaherty on board the Caledonian Sleeper

Mr Flaherty said: 'We apologise to guests affected by delays to our services last night. These were as a result of signalling problems across the network'

Mr Flaherty said: ‘We apologise to guests affected by delays to our services last night. These were as a result of signalling problems across the network’

The new trains will be introduced on the Highlander route between London and Aberdeen, Inverness and Fort William in the coming weeks.

The fleet, built at a cost of £150m, has been part funded by capital grants from Scottish ministers and from the UK Government.

Accommodation ranges from new comfort seats to rooms with double beds and en suites – a first in the history of Caledonian Sleeper.

Mr Flaherty said: ‘Our new trains have been years in the making and to see them make their debut is a huge moment for everyone involved in making this dream a reality.

‘The overriding ambition has been to deliver on our vision of a Caledonian Sleeper service fit for today’s traveller, one that combines the modern facilities people expect with that feeling of nostalgia that comes from long-distance railway travel.

‘We want guests to have a magical journey with us, whether they are travelling for business or for pleasure.’

Other new features on the trains include a hotel-style keycard entry system, charging panels and Wi-Fi throughout.

Cabinet Secretary for Transport Michael Matheson said: ‘The Scottish Government is proud to have played its part in the launch of this new Caledonian Sleeper service.

‘In subsidy over the 15 years of this franchise, in support for this fleet of new trains and in funding for stations and passenger lounges, this is clear evidence of our genuine commitment to both rail and tourism in Scotland.

The fleet, built at a cost of £150m, has been part funded by capital grants from Scottish ministers and from the UK Government

The fleet, built at a cost of £150m, has been part funded by capital grants from Scottish ministers and from the UK Government

Accommodation ranges from new comfort seats to rooms with double beds and en suites – a first in the history of Caledonian Sleeper

Accommodation ranges from new comfort seats to rooms with double beds and en suites – a first in the history of Caledonian Sleeper

Comedian and writer Susan Calman, who will be the new voice of the announcements on the Caledonian Sleeper services, shows off the new carriages on the train

Comedian and writer Susan Calman, who will be the new voice of the announcements on the Caledonian Sleeper services, shows off the new carriages on the train

‘The scale of change is remarkable and a credit to everyone who has worked on this project.’ 

Scottish Secretary David Mundell: ‘It is fantastic to see the launch of the new Caledonian Sleeper service.

‘The UK Government has invested £50 million in the new fleet, improving vital connectivity between Scotland and England, and improving the service for the thousands of passengers. I was pleased to travel on their debut journey and look forward to using this service for years to come.’

Read more at DailyMail.co.uk


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