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Heartfelt Story Behind Train Station Voice Is A Feels Trip

This story of the voice behind a particular underground station is a sentimental ride. Sometimes people do things for other people. For encouraging things, here's some blessed images and wholesome memes to serve as a reminder that people can be good.

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    Text - John Bull @garius It is election season. The world is busy and rubbish. But it is also Christmas. So take a breather and let me tell you a story about London, trains, love and loss, and how small acts of kindness matter. I'm going to tell you about the voice at Embankment Tube station. 36.4K 5:11 PM - Dec 11, 2019 19.2K people are talking about this
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    Text - John Bull @garius Just before Christmas 2012, staff at Embankment Tube station were approached by a woman who was very upset. She kept asking them where the voice had gone. They weren't sure what she meant. The Voice? The voice, she said. The man who says 'Mind the Gap'
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    Text - John Bull @garius Don't worry, the staff at Embankment said. The announcement still happens, but they've all been updated. New digital system. New voices. More variety. The staff asked her if she was okay. "That voice," she explained, "was my husband."
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    Text - John Bull @garius The woman, a GP called Dr Margaret McCollum, explained that her husband was an actor called Oswald Laurence. Oswald had never become famous, but he HAD been the chap who had recorded all the Northern Line announcements back in the seventies. And Oswald had died in 2007.
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  • 5
    Text - John Bull @garius Oswald's death had left a hole in Margaret's heart. But one thing had helped. Every day, on her way to work, she got to hear his voice. Sometimes, when it hurt too much, she explained, she'd just sit on the platform at Embankment and listen to the announcements for a bit longer.
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    Text - John Bull @garius For five years, this had become her routine. She knew he wasn't really there but his voice - the memory of him - was. To everyone else, it had just been another announcement. To HER it had been the ghost of the man she still loved. And now even that had gone.
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    Text - John Bull @garius The staff at Embankment were apologetic, but the whole Underground had this new digital system, it just had to be done. They promised, though, that if the old recordings existed, they'd try and find a copy for her. Margaret knew this was unlikely, but thanked them anyway.
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    Text - John Bull @garius In the New Year, Margaret McCollum sat on Embankment Station, on her way to work. And over the speakers she heard a familiar voice. The voice of a man she had loved so much, and never thought she'd hear again. "Mind the Gap" Said Oswald Laurence.
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    Text - John Bull @garius Because it turned out a LOT of people at Embankment, within London Underground, within @TfL and beyond had lost loved ones and wished they could hear them again. And they'd all realised that with luck, just this once, for one person, they might be able to make that happen.
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  • 10
    Text - John Bull @garius Archives were searched, old tapes found and restored. More people had worked to digitize them. Others had waded through the code of the announcement system to alter it while still more had sorted out the paperwork and got exemptions. And together they made Oswald talk again.
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  • 11
    Text - John Bull @garius And that is why today, even in 2019, if you go down to Embankment station in London, and sit on the northbound platform on Northern Line, you will here a COMPLETELY different voice say Mind the Gap to ANYWHERE else on the Underground. It's Oswald. Merry Christmas everyone.
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    MinWage
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