POLICE rescued a woman after she deliberately ventured onto tracks at Darlington railway station, it has emerged.

The incident on Wednesday evening caused chaos to rush hour train services with several train operators affected including Virgin Trains East Coast, Northern, Cross Country and TransPennine.

The East Coast Mainline was closed for a period and trains forced to run at a reduced speed in the immediate aftermath of the incident.

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A spokesman for British Transport Police said: “We were called at 6.28pm to Darlington station to reports of a woman on the tracks.

“Officers attended, the woman was removed from the tracks and taken to a place of safety.”

It is understood no action is being taken against the woman.

A woman who said she witnessed the incident, told The Northern Echo: "I was on the train heading back from Middlesbrough with my son when it suddenly stopped.

"The conductor told us there was a trespasser on the tracks and within minutes we saw this woman, clearly angry and shouting at someone on the phone, charging up the railway lines.

"Railway staff tried desperately to stop her but she was having none of it. Not sure what the issue was but she seemed more annoyed than upset."

National Rail Enquiries said the incident caused delays of up to 45 minutes and trains were back to normal at about 8.45pm.

A spokeswoman for Network Rail said: "Trains were stopped in both directions on the East Coast Mainline.

"Once it was confirmed that the individual and members of the British Transport Police and Durham Police weren’t on the line anymore, trains were able to run at extreme caution into Darlington station."