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30th Jan 2018

Woman wakes up on train to find she’s been given £100 gift

Ella Johannessen was shocked to wake up on a train and find "£100 under a napkin" on her lap

Oli Dugmore

A train passenger was shocked to wake up from a nap and find “£100 under a napkin” on her lap.

The Leeds Beckett graduate was on Saturday service to Leeds discussing how “stressed and upset” she was about the state of her finances during a phone call with her mother.

After taking a nap Ella Johannessen woke up and found the gift which she says will stop her from going over her overdraft limit.

She said that after finding the money she began to cry and was “incredibly thankful” for the kind stranger’s help.

Ella has taken to Facebook in an effort to find the person who left the money, her status has been shared more than 6,600 times.


The 23-year-old told the BBC she gave up her part-time job to concentrate on her degree during the final year of study, this deteriorated her finances and led to an increase in personal debt.

Ella boarded a Leeds-bound Virgin Trains East Coast service at Peterborough station on Saturday afternoon before calling her mother.

“I spoke to her about how little money I had, how worried I was about my finances and I got upset,” she wrote.

“After a terrible 18 months where I lost my father and both of his parents it showed me that there is kindness and good people in the world.

“I would like to tell the person that they are a fantastic human being and it has really lifted my spirits and massively helped me out.”

Ella, who lives in Leeds, said she would be “passing the kindness on” by volunteering for a charity.