Berkshire

Basingstoke to Reading train hits tree at Mortimer

Kiln Road, Emmer Green
Image caption Crews dealt with fallen trees on roads including Kiln Road, in Emmer Green, Reading

A passenger train struck one of three trees that had been blown on to a railway line in Berkshire.

The First Great Western (FGW) service from Basingstoke to Reading hit the tree just after 06:30 GMT at Mortimer following high winds.

Network Rail said it removed the debris an hour later and had given the line the all-clear. There were no injuries.

Meanwhile hundreds of homes were left without water after a power cut at a pumping station in Thatcham.

Thames Water said it received more than 300 calls from customers with no water or with very low pressure.

A spokesman said strong winds blew out an overhead power cable causing an outage at its site but most customers were restored by 17:30 GMT.

Roads closed

In the earlier rail incident, First Great Western and CrossCountry trains suffered delays of up to two hours but a normal service was later resumed.

Another FGW train from Reading to Bedwyn had become stuck on a fallen tree at Aldermaston at 10:45 GMT but the service is running as normal again.

Emergency tree felling and removal had closed the A321 Finchampstead Road in Wokingham.

Reading Borough Council said tree crews in Emmer Green had attended fallen trees in Kiln Road and Chestnut Walk with reports of other fallen trees in Gravel Hill.

A tree had also fallen on a bend on Hide End Lane in Spencers Wood, Berkshire.

Southern Electric said there were about 8,500 properties in Berkshire and Oxfordshire without power.

A spokeswoman said teams of engineers were working hard to restore supplies.

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