Disruption warning as Nottingham station reopens following 'arson attack'
Passengers using Nottingham station face days of disruption after the fire-damaged hub reopened following a suspected arson attack.
East Midlands Trains (EMT) said many services will run as normal on Saturday, although some disruption will continue following a huge blaze that caused "significant" damage.
Thousands of football fans are expected to travel to and from the city on Saturday as Nottingham Forest play Aston Villa at home and Notts County face East Midlands rivals Lincoln City away.
The rail operator said it had put alternative travel plans in place for several services, including queuing arrangements at the station for safety.
Passengers were advised to check the latest travel information before they head to the station, which reopened at 4.45am after emergency services and structural engineers deemed the building was safe.
Network Rail said five platforms could reopen for the start of service on Saturday, however two will remain closed.
Meanwhile National Rail Enquires advised passengers that the station had reduced facilities including no lifts, no step-free access and no toilets.
There was major disruption to services on Friday after the fire, which is believed to have been started deliberately in toilets shortly after 6.30am, spread to the station's concourse roof.
It took 60 firefighters to control the blaze and the station remained closed for the rest of the day.
EMT managing director Jake Kelly thanked the emergency services for their "brave and professional response" to the fire that resulted in "significant damage to the station".
"Thankfully, it appears that no-one has been injured. We will continue to support the investigation into the cause of the fire and would ask anyone who may have any information to contact British Transport Police.
"I am pleased that the emergency services and structural engineers have now confirmed it is safe to re-open the station (on Saturday) and that we can start to resume services.
"While we will be able to run many of our normal timetabled services, there will continue to be some disruption in the next few days as a result of the fire.
"Some of our normal facilities at Nottingham station will also not be available immediately."
British Transport Police (BTP) said the fire may have been started deliberately.
Head of the BTP response Supt Sandra England said: "Inquiries have been ongoing and we now have reason to believe the fire may have been started deliberately.
"Officers are working to identify anyone who may have been involved in the incident, and we are appealing for information from members of the public.
"Fortunately, we have not had any reports of injuries as a result of the fire."
The Grade II listed station was built in the mid-19th century and refurbished in recent years.