Merseyrail customers come in different shapes and sizes, but having a bear on the train, albeit of the teddy variety, is probably a first.
Gabriela Tanianis-Hughes, aged nine, was thrilled to win Hugo, a 10ft teddy bear at a fund-raising event for local charity, Claire House children’s hospice in Wirral, but disappointed when it became clear that getting him home to by car was not going to be possible.
The problem was solved when dad, Chris Hughes, hit on the idea of transporting him by train, and Merseyrail was only too happy to oblige.
On arrival at Birkenhead station, staff helped Chris and Gabriela get Hugo on a train to Chester, which fortunately, wasn’t too busy at the time. Gabriela was thrilled to be able to take him home.
Gabriella already has some experience with big bears, at a similar event a while ago, she won a 5ft bear.
Teddy bears aren’t the most unusual requests for travel Merseyrail has received: a gentleman once turned up at a station with a horse, which he hoped to take with him on the train.