Unmasked: Victoria Line Tube driver bringing Londoners joy with his singing

·3-min read
 (Barney Davis)
(Barney Davis)

The Tube driver behind now infamous Victoria line train announcements has been told to “calm down” by TfL management after going viral for bringing a smile to Londoner’s faces.

Twitter user Katie Pennick revealed that when she took her last trip on the Victoria Line things took a turn towards the surreal when the driver started to make announcements over the tannoy.

Taking to Twitter, she shared a video of the hilarious announcement, alongside the caption: “Driver of the Victoria Line train I’m on has gone fully rogue.

“Has turned off announcements and doing them himself.”

That driver Aklaqur Rahman, 55, has worked on the London Underground for 22 years after graduating to become a Tube driver in just seven years.

Speaking from an RMT picket at Seven Sisters on Friday, complete with lamb chops, BBQ and reggae music blasting behind him, Mr Rahman went through his oeuvre including More Than A Feeling - his favourite whenever he passes through Boston Manor.

Commuters make their way to catch buses outside Victoria underground train station (Getty Images)
Commuters make their way to catch buses outside Victoria underground train station (Getty Images)

On his fame after going viral on social media, he said: “I love seeing Londoner’s reactions it makes my day seeing them smile.”

He said his family, including his two young daughters, do not think he is a great singer but that won’t put him off.

“I’m not good, I’m not going to win X Factor but I’m passionate”, he laughs.

He recently transferred to the Victoria Line giving him an opportunity to try out some new material. The Bangladesh native said he had been “slapped on the wrist” by management for breaking TfL’s code-of-conduct with his use of puns, singing and trivia instead of official announcements.

“My favourite one to do is sing the national anthem by Green Park because it is close to Buckingham Palace.

“But then I switch it halfway through to another Queen and pump out ‘I Want to Break Free’ before I open the doors.”

On going viral, he said: “I’m getting emotional. I used to be bullied as a young kid at school, I’m uneducated, I got bad results. All my cousins and relatives are doctors, lawyers and solicitors.

“When I went viral it made me happy. I wanted to be something in life.

“My eldest girl was like ‘wow’. But my wife was giving me dirty looks, I said ‘don’t worry I’m just having fun with the customers’.”

He said management have told him to “calm it down, a bit” but he says adrenaline often takes over.

“I try not to do it in the mornings when everyone is miserable but off-peak things are different,” he says.

On the strikes, Mr Rahman said: “The times are hard. Soon I’m going to have to take a second job stacking shelves to keep up with the bills and raise family.

“I don’t want to retire. I want to do this job until the day I die.

“One day driverless trains will happen, it is inevitable but until then there’s no point stressing.”

He spoke as around 10,000 members of the RMT union are staging a 24-hour walkout in an ongoing dispute over jobs and pensions, while 1,100 members of Unite union are striking on the Underground, Croydon Tramlink, and Victoria coach station.