Man describes 'bizarre' case of waking up in wrong city after boarding overnight Scotland train

A man has described his circumstances as “bizarre” after going to sleep on an overnight train service bound for London amid this week’s heatwave and waking up in the wrong city.

Jim Metcalfe, a charity chief executive based in East Renfrewshire, was travelling to the UK capital for work when he boarded the Caledonian Sleeper service at Glasgow Central station on Tuesday night about 10:30pm.

But he described being left bemused after waking up still in Glasgow, claiming neither he nor other passengers on the service were told the train had been cancelled until the morning.

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Mr Metcalfe posted on social media: "In 15 years of using this train, and through many bizarre twists and turns, this has to be strangest yet – wake up, and the train never left Glasgow. It was just sat here all night, and now we have been thrown off it at 5:30am in the wrong city.”

Posting to Twitter on Wednesday, Mr Metcalfe added: “Cal Sleeper tweeted that the service was on last night, let people board and just left us sitting here all night. They let everyone get in and go to sleep, and just left us here … it’s hard to even know what to say.”

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The heatwave that led to temperatures peaking at 35.1C in Scotland and more than 40C in the rest of the UK on Tuesday sparked a host of train cancellations, with the Caledonian Sleeper, Avanti and Lumo services all


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The Caledonian Sleeper service due for London remained at Glasgow Central station overnight on Tuesday. Picture: NationalWorld

Overhead cables failed, while train tracks overheated and buckled. Network Rail staff worked overnight to make repairs.

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Mr Metcalfe, 43, who had checked the Sleeper was still running before travelling to Glasgow Central, praised staff for being “calm and professional”

He told the BBC: "I can't sleep before it starts moving so I get on early and try to sleep first, so I got on at 10:30pm and was asleep by 11pm. That was it really.

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"There was a knock on the door at 5am and a guy very kindly appeared with a roll and sausage and coffee – he explained the train hadn't moved.

"We were told we had to get off because they needed the platform back. It was more surreal than anything else – I should have been 300 miles away."

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Kathryn Darbandi, Serco’s managing director for Caledonian Sleeper, said: “We apologise to guests affected by the cancellation of our overnight services between Scotland and London.

"This was due to a fault identified on the line, late in the evening, related to the extreme temperatures causing problems across the network, which were outside of our control.

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“We made all efforts to support guests impacted, including providing overnight accommodation on board and options for travel on alternative rail services the next day. All guests will receive a full refund.”



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