Trainspotter on TikTok 'Brings Joy' to Millions With Wholesome Viral Videos

TikTok is awash with funny videos, choreographed dance routines and viral challenges.

However, one thing you may not associate the app with is footage of trains. That is, until now...

A creator by the name of Francis Bourgeois has been making use of both the social media platform and railway platforms to post thoroughly wholesome content of his trainspotting hobby—and people online are loving it.

The 21-year-old student, who studies at Nottingham University in the U.K., is on the fast train to superstardom with 529,300 followers and a total of 11.3 million likes to his account so far.

His videos show his unbridled delight when a train passes and honks at him, and he typically films both his own face with a fish-eye style GoPro lens, as well as the train traveling by.

One clip, which can be watched here, was shared on September 20 and has already surpassed 6.9 million views.

It shows the young man sitting at a station, awaiting a Class 377 locomotive to travel by on its way to Littlehampton to Southampton Central.


Here is a Southern class 377 running Littlehampton to Southampton Central #trains #trending #fyp

♬ original sound - Francis Bourgeois

In the process of the excitement, good-humored Bourgeois loses his balance and falls off the chair but, thankfully, manages to salvage the candy he is holding.

Another video, viewed 2.6 million times and shared on September 22, shows the TikToker's sighting of the famed Mayflower steam train, which was built in 1948.


Here’s the glorious Mayflower whistling through Southbourne on a special service from London Paddington - Chichester! #trains #trending #fyp

♬ original sound - Francis Bourgeois

Bourgeois records his joyous reaction, which can be watched here, as the train hurtles past, explaining: "goosebumps all over my body."

The student, who often wears a vintage stationmaster's cap, recently created a video in response to a social media user accusing him of being a fake character, revealing that his "passion for trains was founded" at Willesden Junction station in London.

Bourgeois explained that, as a young boy "me and my dad used to sit on the platform at the weekends. As I got older I got my model trainset and slowly built up and epic diorama."


Reply to @baldidiot here is a video I made in response to the comments I’ve seen saying I’m fake #trains #trending #fyp

♬ #19 - Aphex Twin

The TikToker added that the reason for making the videos was because: "I love to show you guys how awesome trains can be as well as trying to make you smile, laugh and just try and bring joy."

And it is clear from the comments that Bourgeois' videos do just that. One viewer, Romsey Hedgehog Lady, wrote: "I'm not a train enthusiast, but I love watching this."

Another TikTok user, Lewi2021, added: "You're a top man, and we need more pure goodness like you in this world.

"Keeping on doing this, bro, it brings so much happiness."

Promission1 typed: "Your editing is really good. Cutting between the trains and your heartwarming reactions tells the complete story. Excellent."

User9082394718442 commented: "The pure joy from trains in this man's heart is great."

Newsweek have reached out to Bourgeois for comment.

man on a train
A stock image of a man looking out of train window. On TikTok a student has gone viral for his videos showing his trainspotting hobby. iStock