Tearful children miss fireworks after new train breaks down

Passengers boarding a replacement train after a breakdown at Wymondham meant families missed the Big

Passengers boarding a replacement train after a breakdown at Wymondham meant families missed the Big Boom fireworks in Norwich Picture: Darren Holmes

A passenger has described how children were left in tears when they realised they had missed the Norwich Big Boom fireworks after a new Greater Anglia train broke down.

Passengers waiting to board the Greater Anglia train that developed a fault. Picture: Daren Holmes

Passengers waiting to board the Greater Anglia train that developed a fault. Picture: Daren Holmes

Darren Holmes boarded the 6.15pm Norwich train on Friday, November 8 at Wymondham to head to City's Premier League match against Watford.

Large crowds of travellers got on as City fans were joined by youngsters and their families on the way to watch the 7pm Big Boom fireworks display in the city.

But passengers were left waiting as the train developed a fault and had to get off after a lengthy delay.

The 50-year-old said: "I have never seen the station so busy.

One of Greater Anglia's new trains. Picture: Neil Didsbury

One of Greater Anglia's new trains. Picture: Neil Didsbury - Credit: Archant


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"With the fireworks and football there were lots and lots of people who got on but it just sat there.

"The minutes rolled by and there was an announcement that the train had a fault.

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"They checked the train front and back but it became apparent as word spread the train had an emergency fault. They wouldn't allow people to stay on the train so it trundled away empty towards Norwich."

A replacement train soon arrived but because there were so many passengers not everyone could board.

The engineer added: "It became clear to the families going to the fireworks, especially the young children, that they were going to miss the display.

"There were a few tearful children as parents realised they weren't going to make it and gave up and walked off the train.

"I think most people felt sorry for the families that were on there."

Mr Holmes arrived in Norwich at about 7.40pm - more than an hour after the first train arrived.

A Greater Anglia spokesman said: "We apologise unreservedly to passengers affected by this delay and would ask them to get in touch for compensation.

"We will be investigating the fault and taking steps to ensure that our new trains continue to operate as reliably as we, and our customers, expect them to."

Compensation information can be found at www.greateranglia.co.uk/about-us/our-performance/delay-repay.

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