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Westminster debates West Country railways

Credit: ITV West Country

South West MPs are to debate the future of the West Country's rail services in parliament today (8 February). They say its an opportunity for them to challenge the lack of investment in the regions rail network compared to other parts of the UK .

Discussions come after Network Rail revealed that the biggest ever upgrade to the region's rail network will be up to four ye​a​r​s​ late.

It means a promise to end overcrowding, and speed up journey times has again been delayed.

Residents say promises made two years ago after storms caused damage to the line have yet to be met.

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Rail minister 'proud' of women-only carriages idea

Rail Minister and Devizes MP Claire Perry says she's "proud" to have suggested women-only train carriages last year as a way of making the railways safer.

Labour leadership frontrunner Jeremy Corbyn has come in for a string of criticism for suggesting the same thing in a speech last night. He said the idea could provide a solution to the rise in assault and harassment on public transport.

In an interview with Ian Axton, Perry said she wasn't embarrassed that she came up with the idea and commissioned research into it from Middlesex University - research which changed her views.

Completing rail electrification is a 'top priority' Government says

Completing the electrification of the Great Western line between London and the West is a top priority, the Transport Secretary has announced.

It means that two other major schemes - in the Midlands and across the Pennines - will be delayed.

Patrick McLoughlin told MPs that delays and problems, which have seen the costs treble to £1.7bn, "could and should" have been foreseen by Network Rail, whose chairman is being replaced.

Later, he told Bristol East MP Kerry McCarthy there were "big engineering challenges" but new trains should be operating on the electrified line in 2017 or 2018 (a year later than originally planned).

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11 year old girl hit by train in Camborne

Girl hit by a train at Camborne Station Credit: ITV News

An eleven year old girl was hit by a train yesterday evening after falling onto the tracks at Camborne railway station.

She was taken to the Royal Cornwall Hospital with minor injuries.

The British Transport Police are investigating but officers are currently treating this incident as an accident.

90 passengers evacuated from train

Train stuck in flood water in Corsham Credit: ITV West Country

A train traveling from London Paddington became stuck in floodwater at Pound Pill in Corsham in the early hours of this morning. 90 passengers were on the train, which came to a halt in a cutting where water was up to a metre deep in places.

All the passengers were rescued from the train by 0600 this morning.

The train is still blocking the track causing major disruption to rail services in the region.

Services to and from Bristol Temple Meads are unable to call at Chippenham. Trains are being diverted via an alternative route, adding around 45 minutes to journey times.

We are trying to arrange rail replacement trains and tickets will be accepted on local transport and other trains.

– First Great Western

Network Rail looks to protect Devon train line

Some of the damage caused by the storms in Dawlish last winter Credit: PA

Network Rail are expected to reveal their thoughts about how to improve the resilience of the train line around South Devon.

They've been asked to investigate a number of options following the devastation caused by the storms earlier in the year. It's not thought they'll go so far as to recommend any particular route or improvement strategy.

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