PASSENGERS were locked in a train for half an hour with two men who were on a violent rampage.

Frightened travellers on the Brighton to Hastings train were stuck with the pair, who they claim were punching people and threatening to set light to the carriage, after the decision was made to lock the doors.

A member of the train staff was assaulted before the doors were shut, locking the passengers inside.

They claimed the men then threatened to take hostages on the train.

The drama happened last Tuesday.

The train was locked when it arrived at Lewes Station.

Video footage captures the moment the fracas spilt out into station after the train doors were finally unlocked after about half an hour.

Govia Thameslink Railway (GTR) said the doors were opened “in the interests of safety for passengers on board”.

Aidan Dodsworth was waiting outside the station for his partner and two-year-old child who were on the train.

He said: “The conductor on the train locked passengers inside with a lunatic who punched a female and started threatening passengers including my partner and daughter.

“The two psychotic men were violent, attacking and harassing people.

“My partner found it to be a very scary experience especially our little girl who was also on the train.

“They were trapped on the train with them alone for 30 minutes before the doors were opened with no reassurance or announcement about what was going on.”

Passengers were desperately tweeting GTR to unlock the doors.

The rail company told them that keeping them locked was “the advice given from the emergency services whilst the attending team were en route to deal with the incident”.

The company refused to elaborate further despite requests from The Argus.

Mr Dodsworth added: “By the time I arrived at the station I started hearing screaming and shouting.

“The guy that was the main one causing all of the issues was outside the station shouting and screaming at everyone.

“Things intensified when he started shouting he had a knife and started kicking a taxi.

“Someone came and dragged him away from the incident and about five minutes later the first police car turned up.”

One passenger tweeted the company: “You locked passengers on a train with a lunatic who became even more aggressive, ‘threatened to take hostages’, ended up fighting with passengers, opened doors. Fight escalates.”

Another asked: “Why did you lock the train when there was a man threatening to punch passengers and set the train alight?”

British Transport Police said it was investigating a number of assaults but had made no arrests.

A GTR spokeswoman said: “A member of our train crew intervened during the disturbance.

“He called 999 for emergency police assistance out of concern for passengers’ safety and after being assaulted himself.

“The train then stopped at Lewes Station and the doors stayed closed while awaiting police assistance.

“They were then subsequently opened in the interests of safety for passengers on board.”

Were you on the train? Contact or ring 01273 021384.