Passengers are being thanked for their patience today (26 July) and advised to check before they travel as services return to normal after Thursday's hot weather.

Teams of Network Rail engineers worked overnight to repair damage at several locations which caused significant disruption to passengers and journeys as temperatures rose in excess of 35°C across the country. 

Track temperatures soared too – up to 20°C higher than the air temperature – and overhead power lines, which keep electric trains moving, suffered at the hands of the extreme weather. 

Network Rail worked with the train operators to keep as many passengers moving as safely as possible across the North West and Central Region.

The excessive temperatures made many journeys impossible and those which did happen were often longer and much busier than normal. 

Phil James, from Network Rail, said: “I want to say sorry to passengers for the disruption and discomfort they faced making their journeys yesterday. The extreme temperatures made travelling by train very difficult at times and we thank passengers for their patience while we worked hard to get people moving again.

“With the railway being made of metal and moving parts, the sustained high temperatures took their toll in places. 

“Everything was done to keep trains moving where possible and last night hundreds of staff were out fixing the damage and repairing the railway, ready for today.

“Trains are running again this morning but please, check before you travel for the latest information.”

Passengers can check before they travel with their train operator or at www.nationalrail.co.uk