A fence panel protecting pedestrians from a dizzying drop onto a railway line was destroyed at the weekend.

An alarming gap was left on a bridge near Oxhey yesterday in a suspected act of vandalism.

Oxhey ward councillor Maggie Parker, who has worked with Network Rail to resolve the issue, says she has been told that a train was hit by the falling debris when the panel was vandalised.

Cllr Parker was made aware by someone she knew that a fence panel was missing on the bridge in Watford Heath - with the councillor immediately springing into action.

The bridge is used regularly by pedestrians, including schoolchildren, and Network Rail were notified straight away about the incident.

A temporary repair was put in last night, with Network Rail returning today to complete a permanent fix.

Cllr Parker is concerned that the panel was removed deliberately.

She said: "It's been removed with some force. It looks deliberate. But we don't know exactly how it happened.

"The British Transport Police and Hertfordshire Constabulary are both aware and they say they are investigating.

"This would have been a very dangerous situation if it had not been fixed. I'm really happy with Network Rail's response."