David Baddiel’s unique children’s story arrives on Virgin Trains

  • ‘The Girl Who Had Never Been On A Train’, available exclusively on Virgin Trains on-board entertainment system
  • Award-winning children’s author created the tale after collecting inspiration from passengers along Virgin Trains East and West Coast routes
  • The children’s story is the first exclusive-commission on BEAM

Virgin Trains will launch tomorrow (7th September) its first-of-a-kind children’s story, The Girl Who Had Never Been On a Train, written by comedian and award-winning children’s author, David Baddiel, in his role as Virgin Trains’ ‘Summer Author’. The exclusive story has been brought to life with drawings from by award-winning illustrator Jim Field.

David travelled on Virgin Trains over the summer months across the UK on both the east and west coast routes to create the children’s fiction. His tale was inspired by his observations of the passengers and staff who travel on Virgin Trains. By spending time on the trains and interacting with passengers, David also unearthed people’s summer memories, which inspired his story.

This unique story will delight fans of his two previous, highly-acclaimed children’s books, The Parent Agency and The Person Controller. The Girl Who Had Never Been on a Train is being unveiled as the first exclusive commission for BEAM, Virgin Trains’ free on-board content platform.

The Girl Who Had Never Been On a Train, tells the tale of eleven year-old Chrissie who loves trains but Chrissie has yet to travel on an actual one. When Chrissie finally gets on a train, with her Grandpa Henry, to go to London for an important operation, her trip from Scotland to London turns out to be quite literally magical – and is going to change Chrissie’s life forever…

Commenting on his latest release, David Baddiel said,
“I’ve always loved trains. They may be my favourite form of transport. I also think trains are inspirational for the imagination, especially on a long journey like London to Edinburgh. In a way, I’d like a private train to stay on every day, as I think I write better on them than at home. Anyway, I hope my readers like this new story, about a disabled girl called Chrissie who also loves trains, but has never actually been on one: till now. As is usual in my stories, something a bit weird and magical happens early on in the journey, and Chrissie gets taken somewhere she really didn’t expect to go – although it all takes place on the train. Rather like the writing of it…”

Patrick McCall, co-Chairman of Virgin Trains, said,
“This latest addition to BEAM is a first-of-a-kind and has been developed through a creative process that features our customers at its core. We see and hear so many wonderful conversations and stories on board our trains and to bring this inspiration to life with David has been an exciting experience for us all. BEAM is available to anyone who travels with us, so everyone can enjoy reading ‘The Girl Who Had Never Been On A Train’. David has been inspired by our customers, our staff and our social media followers to craft his story. We’re sure that everyone will enjoy reading along with us on-board.”

Virgin Trains has been working with David’s publisher, HarperCollins Children’s Books, to bring the story to life and become the first book content on BEAM this year, available to all Virgin Trains passengers on board. Combined sell-through across all formats for his two previous novels, The Parent Agency & The Person Controller stands at over 250,000 copies in the UK.*