A National Express coach travelling from Birmingham to Stansted Airport overturned on the M1 today, injuring several passengers.

The trapped driver had to be cut free by fire crews and was airlifted to hospital, but a spokesman for Thames Valley Police could not confirm the number of injured passengers.

The coach, the number 777 service from Digbeth Coach Station,  overturned on a sliproad at Newport Pagnell Services.

Police were called by service station managers just after 4pm. Four ambulances went to the scene.

A National Express spokeswoman said 33 passengers were on board at the time but she could not provide details of any injuries they may have suffered. The company is urging worried friends and relatives to call a dedicated emergency helpline on 0800 731 2734 if they fear loved ones could have been involved.

One passenger, Kirsty Plummer, told Sky News she avoided serious injury by wearing her seatbelt, but that others who weren't securely seated were thrown across the inside of the coach.

Eddie Gershon, a spokesman for Welcome Break, which operates the service station, said: "The coach went over on its side after hitting a lamp post and a tree, I’ve been told, and ended up in the car park.

"About a dozen staff from Newport Pagnell came out and gave initial first aid before the emergency services arrived. The driver was cut from the coach and I believe all the passengers have been taken off."