Video and Photo Gallery - Trains return to normal service following seven-hour Ipswich station drama
- Credit: Archant
British Transport Police have detained a man after a day of transport disruption caused by a seven-hour drama at Ipswich station.
Police officers, firefighters and paramedics were called at about 8.26am after a man climbed on to the roof of the station, and stayed there for seven hours before coming down of his own accord at about 3.15pm using a ladder.
Although Ipswich station re-opened at 3.40pm, and the first of an hourly service between London and Norwich started at 4pm, Network Rail this evening said journey times in the Ipswich area are still likely to be extended by up to one hour.
However, it has removed advice to passengers not to travel 'unless absolutely necessary'.
It said the following changes apply also until further notice:
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•An hourly service will run between London Liverpool Street and Norwich
•Buses are replacing trains between Ipswich and Felixstowe
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•Trains between Ipswich and Cambridge / Peterborough are now running their booked route
•Trains between Ipswich and Lowestoft are now running their booked route
A spokesman for British Transport Police said he was not believed to be injured, but he was checked over by paramedics at the station.
A spokesman for British Transport Police (BTP) said: 'BTP officers were called to Ipswich station on Friday, 19 July following a report of a man on the station roof.
'BTP and Suffolk Police officers attended the incident which was reported to BTP at 8.26am.
'Suffolk Fire and Rescue Service also attended the incident, and placed a ladder to allow the man to get down, which he refused. Officers also retrieved a retractable knife, which the man dropped.
'Police negotiators were called and spoke to the man for an extended period of time to encourage him to leave the roof safely, which would have allowed the station and lines to reopen more promptly.
'Specialist policing at heights officers were also deployed and, at 3.10pm, the 25-year-old man came down of his own accord via a ladder.'
Superintendent Matt Allingham, of BTP, said: 'This was a difficult and deeply frustrating situation for officers, rail staff and all passengers and I'd like to thank everyone for their patience today.
'We were faced with a man in a precarious situation, some 30 feet from the ground, who did not want to come down. During the incident the safety of the man, and members of the public nearby, was of paramount concern for us.
'The man was walking around areas that could not have taken the weight of more than one person; if anyone had taken the wrong step, the consequences could have been far worse.
'Power in and around the station was also turned off to preserve the safety of the man and officers dealing with the incident.'
The man is currently being assessed by Medics from East of England Ambulance service at the station.
Train users travelling from Norwich to Liverpool Street were advised to travel via Cambridge and Network Rail cancelled a string of services from Norwich to Liverpool Street after the man was spotted on the roof.
Travellers from Norwich were advised to avoid Ipswich altogether and to travel via Cambridge if possible.
The British Transport Police said the man had been found in possession of a weapon - a retractable knife - and that officers were working to remove him without affecting safety of public or passing trains.
The man, wearing shorts and no shoes was standing on the roof above the main platforms.
Power to the rail lines was disconnected the station was evacuated and closed while officers deal with the incident.
As a result services running through Ipswich are facing severe delays.
A spokesman for Greater Anglia said services have been suspended.
He said: 'BTP are at the scene and dealing with the incident.
'It is causing some delays at the moment because they have had to isolate the power lines as a precaution.
'We hope the incident will be resolved as soon as possible.'
Given there are delays in excess of 60 minutes, customers will be entitled to some compensation.
A bus replacement service has been put in place between Manningtree and Stowmarket after Network Rail were forced to turn off electricity at the station.
Train operator Greater Anglia said, as of 1.30pm there was a limited train service between Stowmarket and Norwich in both directions.
Trains were also running between London and Colchester with a limited service on to Manningtree.
National Rail have stated that passengers who do not wish to travel today because of the disruption can use their tickets tomorrow.