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In the short story The Girl in the Train, William Rowland is the uncle, and employer, of George Rowland. For twenty four years, William had looked after his nephew and had given him a position in his firm, which is some kind of investment broker. However, one morning, George comes in to work very late after a late night party. This is too much for William, and so he fires him.

There is very little description of William in the text. However, George says that he is a snob. Titles appealed to William and he would surely approve of George marrying Elizabeth Gaigh, who is a daughter of the Marquis of Axminster. Not only would he welcome George back into the house but would likely give him a partnership in the firm.

Portrayals[]

In the episode The Girl in the Train of The Agatha Christie Hour, a TV film adaptation of the story, the part of William Rowland is played by James Grout. In the show, his firm is called "W Rowland, investment brokers to the aristocracy" and he has a secretary Miss Garstang.

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