Weather warnings have been put in place across Britain as rail passengers were advised not to try to travel between England and Scotland.
The Met Office issued a yellow weather warning for rain and thunderstorms for parts of the north of England, the Midlands, Scotland and Wales on Wednesday.
It said there was a chance homes and businesses could be flooded, rail and bus services could be cancelled or delayed, and the weather could lead to difficult driving conditions and road closures.
All lines are blocked on the West Coast mainline between Carlisle and Lockerbie because a tree fell on overhead equipment in Floriston, Cumbria.
Network Rail sent out extra teams to repair the damage. A spokesperson said “trees, branches and other debris” had been “blown on to the tracks, as well as some instances of flooding. We have extra teams on the ground at various locations across the country to deal with any disruption.”
Virgin Trains said it was not possible for passengers to use the East Coast mainline as an alternative route because of disruption caused by a person being hit by a train.
“The closure of our route to Scotland is causing significant disruption and we want to apologise to all our customers affected by this,” a spokesman said.
“We’re doing our best to help people complete their journeys, but would advise anyone who has not set off on their journey to either wait until the disruption has cleared, travel tomorrow or get a refund.”
The Environment Agency issued 44 flood alerts for England, advising flooding was possible, and five flood warnings, which mean flooding was expected and immediate action was needed.
This week, there have been showers and thunderstorms in southern and eastern parts of England, with a persistent band of rain edging north and west.
In Wales, people were advised not to travel unless it was essential. “Continued heavy rain during today means that travel to and from your desired destination cannot be guaranteed,” Transport for Wales tweeted.
In Rossett, near Wrexham, the River Alyn burst its banks, flooding the beer garden of a pub.
Natasha Kelly, who works at the pub, said she noticed the flooding when she drove past at about 8.15am. “We had one man who went and sat in the beer garden, in the middle of the river, with a pint of lager, but really it’s quite dangerous and we don’t know how far it’s going to go,” she said.
North Wales police tweeted about road closures in the area. “Good Morning, weather and road conditions are atrocious. Please slow down wherever you may be going. Assess the need for your journey, drive to the conditions and your driving ability. Please DO NOT ignore any road closure signs. Think Safety,” they tweeted.
Met Office weather warnings are in place until Thursday.
UK weather: flood warnings in place as rail services disrupted – The Guardian