Disruption after Severn Valley Railway train derailed by fallen tree

A Severn Valley Railway steam train became partly derailed after crashing into a fallen tree near Bridgnorth, closing the line.

The train hit the fallen tree during strong winds yesterday on the route between Highley and Hampton Loade, causing its front guide wheels to become derailed.

The steam locomotive no. 75069 did not have any passengers on board or any carriages attached and the driver was not injured in the crash.

The train is currently awaiting a full report to assess the extent of its damage.

Railway sleepers and chairs are being replaced and realigned and there are no trains running between Bridgnorth and Highley today, with steam trains running from Kidderminster to Highley only.

An amended service and timetable has been put in place and a vintage replacement bus service will operate throughout the day between Upper Arley Village, near the station to the east of the river, and Bridgnorth Station.

The Engine House at Highley will remain open while the changes are in place, and the railway said it is hoping to be back to normal by tomorrow.

Lewis Maddox, of Severn Valley Railway, said: "Steam locomotive no. 75069 hit a fallen tree between Hampton Loade and Highley yesterday morning.

"The locomotive was travelling without any carriages or passengers and no one was hurt in the incident, however it has caused minor damage to the track, requiring replacement of sleepers and chairs and will need tampering back into alignment before trains can run again. The locomotive is currently awaiting full inspection to assess any damage.

“We are running an amended timetable today, with trains running between Kidderminster and Highley and a replacement vintage bus service running between Upper Arley Village, a short walk from the station, and Bridgnorth, so visitors can ride two vintage modes of transport instead of just one.

"We’re also offering people the chance to join the driver and fireman on the footplate of our Pannier Tank No. 7714 at Bridgnorth today(23). Our Engine House Visitor Centre at Highley and all of our Very British Summer activities are still taking place too.

“Work on the track is progressing well and we hope to return to full service tomorrow. We’d like to say a big thank you to all of our visitors for their patience and understanding.”

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