Northbound Caledonian Sleeper terminated at Stafford after ‘technical issue’
The early-morning cancellation comes after the new £150m fleet arrived in London three hours late on its debut following signalling issues.
A Caledonian Sleeper service from London to Glasgow and Edinburgh was cancelled in the early hours of the morning as problems continued for the new trains.
The overnight Lowlander service suffered a “technical issue with the coaches” and terminated at Stafford in the West Midlands.
People who were travelling on part of the new £150 million fleet – with accommodation ranging from new comfort seats to rooms with double beds and en suites – instead faced a replacement bus service to Edinburgh with tickets accepted for those travelling to Glasgow.
One man travelling on the train and waiting for the replacement bus service tweeted that he was “currently stuck in Crewe … standing in the rain and the coaches are here but no drivers”.
What your not telling your passengers is that the coach driver will need to take a 45 minute break and Virgin are saying you are not accepting our tickets on Virgin trains— @frankfletcher (@frankfletcher) June 12, 2019
The first Caledonian Sleeper tweet at 4.56am said: “Our apologies to guests but due to a technical issue with the coaches, this service will have to terminate at Stafford.
“Replacement road transport has been arranged to take guests from Stafford to Glasgow. Our team onboard can advise further.”
The company then posted another update at 5.09am saying: “Guests travelling onwards to Edinburgh can use connecting rail services from Glasgow, using their sleeper tickets.
“All guests can apply for a 100% refund through Delay Repay scheme.
“Our sincere apologies to all guests for tonight’s service failure.”
Another tweet posted at 7.17am added: “Our sincere apologies to all guests on our northbound Lowlander service, following this morning’s cancellation.
“Road transport is now underway from Stafford to Glasgow and Edinburgh. Alternative train services are also available from Crewe.”
London to Glasgow/Edinburgh— Caledonian Sleeper (@CalSleeper) June 12, 2019
Our apologies to guests but due to a technical issue with the coaches, this service will have to terminate at Stafford. Replacement road transport has been arranged to take guests from Stafford to Glasgow. Our team onboard can advise further.
It is the latest in a number of problems with the new service, which debuted at the end of April but arrived three hours late in London following signalling issues on the line.
At the time, Network Rail said there was also an issue with the train itself.
Ryan Flaherty, managing director for Caledonian Sleeper, said of the latest incident: “The Lowland service from London to Glasgow/Edinburgh was terminated at Stafford early this morning due to technical issues.
“We are working to understand the cause of this problem and we apologise to all guests affected.
“Once the service was terminated, we arranged for road transport to take guests to Glasgow while alternative train services were also available from Crewe.
“All guests who travelled on the service last night will, of course, receive a full refund.”
He also said the Wednesday night service from Glasgow/Edinburgh to London would be cancelled, saying: “As a result of the technical issues, we have taken the decision to cancel tonight’s Lowland service from Glasgow/Edinburgh to London.
“We will be contacting all guests scheduled to travel to inform them of the cancellation and help them with alternative arrangements.”