This article is about 'the ancient Sudrian king'. You may be looking for 'the helicopter, the fifth season song, the annual story, the Story Library book or the Engine Adventures book'.

King Harold (987-1047), later nicknamed Harold the Black on account of the colour of his hair and beard, was King of Sodor between 1014 and 1034.


Harold was 2 years old when Earl Sigurd of Orkney sailed south in 989 to invade Sodor and Man for the third time. The battle was fought on Man. Harold's father, Godred MacHarold, and his two older brothers were killed, and Harold's mother fled with him and his sister, Gudun, to Islay.

In 1014 however, Sigurd fell at the battle of Clontarf in Ireland. Thorfinn, Sigurd's heir, was only a babe in arms. Harold, seeing his opportunity, claimed Sodor and Man, and ruled 20 years before Thorfinn was able to drive him out. It is local tradition in Haultraugh that it was there Harold landed to reclaim his father's Kingdom, and some believe that the place name derives from this. It is probable that he used Harwick to traverse between Sodor and Man, and some authorities maintain that "Harwick" is a corruption of "Harold's Wick".

Harold's son was killed in the battle against Thorfinn, but Harold escaped to Iceland where he married again in 1044, to Gerda. A son, Godred Crovan, was born in 1045; but Harold did not long survive. He was killed in an affray in 1047. Thorfinn appointed Fignall as a puppet king to replace him, who Godred eventually managed to overthrow, reclaiming Harold's kingdom.


The Railway Series

Companion Volumes


  • Harold the Black is inspired by historical evidence which refers to Godred Crovan's father by the name.
“Welcome to the Steamworks, my friend!”
This article is a stub. You can help by expanding it.