02/01/2018 12:10 GMT | Updated 02/01/2018 16:33 GMT

Virgin East Coast Forced To Apologise Over 'Sexist' Tweet

'Utterly disgraceful.'

Virgin East Coast has been forced to apologise after a message sent from its Twitter account was slammed as sexist.

A customer called Emily Lucinda Cole tweeted to complain about the behaviour of a train manager on her journey: 

In a now-deleted tweet, signed “MS”, the twitter account for Virgin’s East Coast franchise responded:

The tweet prompted a huge backlash.

Someone who overheard the conversation said the manager’s words were “highly patronising”.

Scottish transport minister Humza Yousaf said it was not “appropriate or acceptable”.

Journalist Claire Phipps labelled it condescending. 

Feminist campaigner and journalist Caroline Criado Perez accused Virgin of “outrage marketing” - trying to be edgy to build an audience - but said the tweet was “epically stupid” and vowed not to be silent about it.

Others also waded in, questioning Virgin’s “sexist shit”. 

More than two hours after the tweet was sent, Virgin issued an apology and removed the tweet:

“MS”, however, has continued to tweet.