HUNDREDS of rail passengers faced disruption today after part of the Huddersfield to Manchester line was closed following a fire at a farm.

Services between Manchester Victoria and Stalybridge were suspended after fire crews went to the blaze at the farm next to the line in Droylsden, Greater Manchester, at 6.50pm yesterday.

Services remained suspended overnight and this morning, with buses taking passengers between Manchester and Stalybridge

Officials feared the fire could spread to acetylene cylinders and evacuated residents from about 70 nearby homes.

A police spokeswoman said 16 people had been provided with temporary accommodation.

The fire was brought under control and a 200-yard cordon was set up around the rear of the farm.

A Network Rail spokeswoman said: "With trackside fires, the exclusion zone is normally in force for 24 hours."