The Government has asked rail operator Virgin to continue running the West Coast Main Line for another few months.

Virgin has accepted the temporary fix, which has been proposed by the Department for Transport after its U-turn over the award of a new franchise earlier this month.

Sir Richard Branson's current Virgin franchise is due to end on December 9 but talks are under way about it remaining as operator for between nine and 13 months while a competition is run for an interim franchise agreement.