Passengers at a Buckinghamshire train station were a bit bemused when the ticket machine had stopped working, causing delays to their journeys to work.

And when customer service manager Mark Cooper opened the ticket machine at Little Kimble station in Aylesbury, he discovered the cause of the problem - four rare Glis Glis dormice were found nesting inside the machine. So Mark called in Les Stocker, founder of the St Tiggywinkles Wildlife Hospital.

The Glis Glis is one of the rarest mammals in the UK (the rarest is the wild cat). They were only introduced into the country in 1902 and there are thought to be only around 10,000 in the wild, and nearly all of them live in Buckinghamshire's range of low, rolling hills known as the Chilterns.

The railway Glis Glis have now been taken into the care of Tiggywinkles.

A first class nest: Rare dormice move into village railway station's ticket machine

By Daily Mail Reporter
7th October 2010
Daily Mail

Commuters in Aylesbury had to deal with a rather unusual delay to their journeys to work recently after a family of mice decided to nest in the local train station's ticket machine.

The four rare Glis Glis dormice were found in the machine on the platform of Little Kimble station in Buckinghamshire after complaints it had stopped working.

Les Stocker, founder of St Tiggywinkles wildlife hospital, was called to the station after Chiltern Railways customer service manager Mark Cooper was met by four pairs of eyes when he opened the train ticket machine.

Four tickets, please: A family of rare Glis Glis dormice were found in the machine at Little Kimble station in Aylesbury, Buckinghamshire

Watching eye: The mice have now been relocated to St Tiggywinkles wildlife hospital

Commenting on the rather unusual problem, Mr Cooper said: 'The permit to travel machine was not working and when we opened the machine up to find out what the problem was, we found a group of Glis Glis and contacted St Tiggywinkles.

'We were glad to see the animals taking such an interest in the Chiltern Railways services from Little Kimble.'

The mammals are some of the rarest in the wild and unfortunately had to be relocated from their nest.

Chaos: Commuters were faced with an extra delay after the machine on the platform stopped working

British law does not allow the release of Edible Dormice back into the wild, even though the Chilterns have been home to wild Glis Glis for well over a hundred years so they have now joined Tiggywinkles ever increasing family.

There are believed to be around 10,000 of the rare dormice living in Britain after they were accidentally introduced in England in 1902 after a number escaped from Baron Lionel Walter Rothschild's private collection.

The population is now concentrated around Aylesbury and under the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981 it is illegal to harm the tiny mammal.

The dormice now departing... Little Kimble railway station in Aylesbury, Bucks

Last edited by Blackleaf; Oct 17th, 2010 at 11:44 AM..