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Rail firm's apology over 'fat people' announcement

Rail company apology over fat people announcement Credit: Dominic Lipinski/PA Archive/Press Association Images

South West Trains have apologised for an announcement urging fat people to stay on their feet due to overcrowding.

The train was full of commuters when a member of staff reportedly said: 'We are going to be like sardines on this train, so can I ask that only slim people sit on the three-seaters.

'If you are fat then it is simply not going to work.'

One angry passenger on the service, which was leaving Basingstoke in Hampshire, told the Daily Mail: 'I am not necessarily a big person but most people are larger than those seats anyway. It's pretty disgusting. I would get fired if I said that at my work.'

South West Trains have since apologised, saying the comment, if it had been made, was unacceptable.

A spokesman said: 'All passengers are welcome on board our trains and we would find it unacceptable if that comment had been made by one of our employees.

'We run some of the busiest trains in the country and we do appreciate that space on some of our trains is limited.

'To provide extra space and seats for our customers, we are in the process of investing £250m in extra carriages and new trains.'

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Person hit by train in Surrey and delays for passengers

A person has been hit by a train near Brookwood, which is causing delays of up to an hour for trains between Basingstoke and Woking.

There is no firm estimate yet of how long disruption will last but it is likely to continue until at least 18:00.

Services are unable to call at Hook, Winchfield, Fleet or Farnborough.

A replacement bus service has been requested

Work begins for £7m project to improve South West trains

Work has begun on a £7m project to improve the busy Wimbledon junction -to improve the journeys for thousands of passengers.

Journeys through the station for the next 6 weekends will be affected so that South West Trains can enhance rail reliability.

Work has begun on a £7m project to rebuild a crucial railway junction in Wimbledon Credit: South West Trains

Work at the station begun at Christmas and will continue every weekend until mid-February, with no trains calling at Wimbledon on weekends.

We have scheduled the work in order to minimise disruption to passengers as much as possible but if you, friends or family are travelling during these times, I strongly suggest checking travel details first.

“This work will have a significant impact on our services and we apologise for the inconvenience caused but they are a vital part of improving our network and our service to passengers.”

– John Halsall, infrastructure director for the Network Rail-South West Alliance

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Plans to tackle overcrowding on trains unveiled

Plans to tackle the problem of overcrowding on South West Trains have been revealed today and South West Trains said if it they don't go ahead "customers will not be able to get on trains anymore".

Transport correspondent Mike Pearse spoke to Jake Kelly from South West Trains.

"If we don't get it, ultimately customers will not be able to get on trains anymore, it's that important," Mr kelly said.

New platforms at Southampton Central and Guildford along with new flyovers to take trains over congested junctions at Basingstoke and Woking head a long list of plans being put to the Government.

Delays of up to 50 minutes between Woking and Basingstoke

Signalling problems at Farnborough Main are causing delays of up to 50 minutes between Woking and Basingstoke.

Disruption is expected to continue until 15:00.

Cancellations and short notice alterations expected for some time

South West Trains said cancellations and short notice alterations should be expected for some time.

Train services running through Southampton station may be cancelled, delayed by up to 60 mins or revised at short notice. Disruption is expected until 4:00pm.

Signalling problems at Farnborough Main are causing delays of up to 35 minutes between Woking and Basingstoke.

Replacement Transport has been arranged and will operate between Fareham and Southampton Central and Eastleigh and Southampton Central.

Mutual ticket acceptance has been agreed between South West Trains, Southern, CrossCountry & First Great Western in the area. Customers may use any operators services to complete their journey.

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