GWR Customer Ambassador eyes spot in Christmas bestseller book charts

Wednesday 09th December 2020

Liz Townshend, who works at Bath Spa station, had her third book published at the beginning of November and it is already earning rave reviews online.

GWR Customer Ambassador Liz Townshend with her latest book at a station
GWR Customer Ambassador Liz Townshend with her latest book, published under her writing name Liz Lawler

Published under her writing name Liz Lawler, The Next Wife is described as a psychological thriller with a killer twist – and much of it centres around a messenger on a train.

Tess’s happy marriage has changed and she has no-one to turn to. When she boards a train to London her situation gets worse. At the end of the journey she wakes to find a message on a postcard. Someone has witnessed what she tried to do, but are they friend or foe?


Liz has worked at Bath Spa for the past seven-and-a-half years and says her inspiration for the book started at the station.

She said:


“Being a Customer Ambassador is probably the best job in the world for a writer. You’re watching people’s lives every day. I spend my time helping customers, wondering where they are going and where their journeys will end.

“I’m obviously doing my job and helping people the best I can, but the nature of my work allows me to collect ideas all the time.”

Liz’s debut novel, Don’t Wake Up, was published in May 2017 and has sold more than 300,000 copies, becoming No1 Apple Book and reaching the top of the medical thrillers chart on Amazon Kindle. The front cover of the American version described Liz as an international bestseller and the book has since been translated in 14 different languages.

Her second book, I’ll Find You, was published in January 2019 and also reached No1 in the medical thriller charts. Now Liz is hoping for more of the same from The Next Wife.

The former staff nurse at Royal United Hospitals Bath, who later ran a five-star hotel in the city before joining GWR, said:

“The Next Wife demonstrates that anything and everything is possible in human behaviour. Hopefully people will enjoy a satisfying read with a twist they didn’t see coming.”

GWR has issued the following guidance for those looking to travel this festive holiday period:

  • book tickets in advance and remember and remember you must reserve a space before travelling. This helps us limit the number of people on these trains so it’s easier to socially distance. For reservable trains, we’ll automatically allocate you a space if one is available or ask you to try another service if not. Don’t worry, we always leave space on board for those with walk-up tickets, such as season tickets, or those who may have been disrupted
  • avoid busy trains: Travel as early as you are able to. Services on Friday evening, at weekends, or as we approach the 23 to 27 December Christmas bubble are expected to be in demand. Please be aware that rail services will shut down earlier on Christmas Eve
  • use your mobile: Purchase tickets online to reduce unnecessary contact. Tickets do, however, need to be shown during travel. To help railway staff, charge your phone and keep railcards together for ease of checking
  • do not take more luggage than you can carry: There is space for luggage on board, however you can reduce unnecessary contact with others by not needing help to carry it
  • hands. Face. Space. Hand sanitising equipment has been installed across the GWR network to help safe travel. Face coverings must be worn in the station and on the train unless you are exempt. Pay attention to station posters and floor markings and remember to reserve a seat to help maintain social distancing advice
Notes to editors
Great Western Railway (GWR) provides high speed, commuter, regional and branch line train services. We help over 100 million passengers reach their destinations every year - across South Wales, the West Country, the Cotswolds, and large parts of Southern England.

We’re currently seeing the biggest investment in the network since Brunel so we can offer more trains, more seats, and shorter, more frequent journeys and continue the network’s heritage of helping connect more businesses to new and prosperous markets. Through a series of initiatives we aim to be a good neighbour to the communities we serve and are committed to making a positive social impact in those regions. Learn how we're Building a Greater West at GWR.com. GWR is a FirstGroup company.