COMMUTERS are facing major disruption on the railways this morning due to a signalling fault.

The fault at Deansgate station is causing delays of up to an hour on trains in and out of Manchester, with Bolton commuters among the worst affected.

Some lines are blocked, preventing services from passing through, while other trains are running at reduced speeds.

The disruption is expected to last until 9am.

Northern passengers are being advised to use the Metrolink between Manchester Airport and Manchester Piccadilly and Manchester Victoria in both directions.

A statement issued by Northern read: "Due to a fault with the signalling system near to Deansgate station there is currently major disruption to services to and from Manchester – particularly to the north of the city on routes to Bolton, Wigan, Preston and Blackpool."

They added: "Network Rail staff are currently on site assessing the problem and we will provide further updates as soon as we have them."

The Northern services affected – as of 6.50am – were:

• Blackpool North – Manchester Airport services will terminate at Preston

• Manchester Airport – Blackpool North services will start at Preston

• Liverpool Lime Street – Crewe services will divert and terminate at Manchester Victoria with a Manchester Piccadilly – Crewe service operating via Styal

• Crewe – Liverpool Lime Street services will terminate at Piccadilly. A Manchester Victoria – Liverpool service will run

• Wigan NW – Alderley Edge and return services are suspended with the exception of peak trains