Southern rail Eddie work experience
Eddie starts his second shift on the Southern rail Twitter feed Southern rail

Southern Rail's PR department has been up against it in recent years during a notorious period of cancelled trains, severe delays and industrial action leaving hundreds of thousands of commuters stranded.

But now the network has unveiled an unlikely secret weapon in the battle for hearts and minds on platforms in London and the south east of England.

Step forward Eddie. A 15-year-old work experience staffer who for the last two days has manned the Southern Twitter feed during the afternoon.

It all started yesterday when, just after 2.30pm when Eddie sat himself down at the controls and announced himself in the most endearing fashion.

"Hi, Eddie here! Here on Work Experience and ready to answer your questions!" he wrote, along with a "blushing smiley face" emoji.

It was an invitation that internet users couldn't help but interpret literally, so they proceeded to quiz him on everything from the mundane to the ridiculous. Questions included:

"Would you rather fight 1 horse sized duck or 100 duck sized horse?"
"Shall I have chicken fajitas tonight or chicken thai green curry?"
"Will a boy ever be born who can swim faster than a shark?"
"Hi Eddie any news on Notts County transfers?"
"What video games do you play?"

But Eddie proved himself more than up to the task and responded to each absurd query with wit and charm, winning the hearts of his audience.

In fact, Eddie did such a good job that the Metropolitan Police Service in Haringey tried to poach him.

Sadly, Eddie's shift came to an end after a few hours and the feed returned to the predictable tune of service announcements detailing delayed trains and engineering works.

But the kid was such a big hit he was put back in charge for a second consecutive day.

And the fun times started all over again...

We don't know if Eddie will be back tomorrow but he sure has put a smile on the faces of the thousands of people that have liked and retweeted his incredible Twitter contributions. He's even being interviewed on Radio 1.

Most importantly, he's shown Southern rail passengers that, despite recent troubles with services, the people who work there have a human side and a sense of humour – just like the rest of us.