Richard Branson woke in middle of night to find Elon Musk barefoot in his kitchen - and holding his baby

Richard Branson has revealed a bizarre story about finding Elon Musk in the kitchen of his New Mexico house in the middle of the night before his first space flight.

In an interview this weekend, Mr Branson said the Twitter and Tesla owner was completely barefoot, holding his fast-asleep baby X Æ A-12, and had apparently come to wish him well ahead of his Virgin Galactic mission to take the first passengers into space.

He said he went downstairs to get a cup a coffee and found "Elon had decided to surprise us".

Mr Branson told The Sunday Times magazine: "He was there with his baby. Basically, he's a night animal.

"He doesn't really sleep at night and gets his sleep in the daytime. We made a pot of tea and sat outside under the stars and caught up.

"I think it was about 2.30am," Mr Branson told the newspaper. "I woke up two hours earlier than I was meant to and jumped out of bed, and then actually realised I'd got the wrong time, but by then I was wide awake."

Apparently, a member of Mr Branson's family had let him in.

Mr Musk later joined Mr Branson at the nearby New Mexico spaceport before the British entrepreneur blasted into the edge of space with his Virgin Galactic space tourism flight, beating Jeff Bezos' Blue Origin flight by nine days.

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According to The Sunday Times Magazine, Mr Branson had first met Mr Musk at the wedding of Larry Page, the billionaire co-founder of Google and a mutual friend.

The ceremony was held on Necker Island, Mr Branson's Caribbean home.