Passengers are being warned of major disruption after heavy rain washed away parts of the Marches line between Abergavenny and Hereford.

A train driver reported fast flowing water shortly before 1pm today (26 October) near Pontrilas. The flash flooding went on to wash away the railway foundation stone leaving sections of track suspended.

The extent of the track damage caused by the extreme weather means the important route in and out of Wales will be closed for some time.

Network Rail engineers will carry out a full assessment tomorrow to determine how long it will take to repair the sections of track washed away by the flood water.

Rail replacement buses will be in operation between Newport and Hereford from tomorrow (Sunday 27 October) and Transport for Wales is working on plans so passengers who rely on the line can stay on the move.

A Network Rail spokesperson said: “We understand how disruptive the closure of the Marches line will be to passengers and we’ll work as fast as we can to get it back up and running again. Although we always plan for extreme weather it’s nearly impossible to mitigate such heavy rainfall of the like we’ve seen over the last 24 hours.

“We thank passengers for their patience while we make our repairs and advise them to check National Rail Enquiries to find alternative routes while the Marches line remains closed.”

Passengers are being advised to check with their train operator or visit www.nationalrail.co.uk for the latest travel information.