Virgin Trains has its own free on-board streaming app

Swap the rolling English hills for Frank Underwood's furrowed brow.

The beauty of the English countryside is so overrated. Luckily, the next time you journey on a Virgin train, there's a chance you won't have reason to look up from your phone or tablet at repetitive foliage for even a second. Today, Virgin debuted Beam, a new app-powered entertainment service available initially on West Coast Pendolino and East Coast routes, with all Voyager trains catching up by September. Through the Beam Android and iOS apps, passengers can access roughly 200 hours of TV and film for free during their journey, from Captain America: Winter Soldier to House of Cards, or Peppa Pig for the littluns.

The streaming catalogue will vary slightly from route to route, and when you've had enough of Frank Underwood's questionable politicking, there are plenty of free games and digital magazines to check out too. In the same way several airlines are able to offer in-flight streaming to passenger's devices, Beam pulls content from an on-train server, keeping your monthly data allowance safe and making your long-haul journey that bit less tedious.