Hornby Railways produces a series of 00 gauge model engines, track, accessories, and box sets based on the characters of Thomas and Friends. The track and couplers are Hornby's standard; therefore the range is compatible with their main range. This range is designed for somewhat older children than most Thomas toys, as young children are likely to find Hornby trains quite fiddly, the higher price, and the higher level of detail than on cheaper plastic toys make rough handling of the toys by young children inadvisable.
Hornby launched its range in its current form in 1985, shortly after the debut of the television series. It mainly utilises modified versions of existing Hornby engines.
Engines, Rolling stock, and Scenery
- Thomas - made using a modified version of a London, Brighton and South Coast Railway E2 tank engine
- Percy - a brand new moulding utilising the standard Hornby 0-4-0 chassis
- Annie and Clarabel - produced using Hornby's standard four-wheeled coaches
- Open wagon
- Closed van (retired)
- Brakevan - made using a BR standard brakevan (retired)
- Milk tanker - made using a standard four-wheeled tanker. Although the tanker usually carried blue lettering, several have been made with red lettering; these are extremely rare.
Thomas and Percy were also released as clockwork "Playtrains". Percy used the same moulding as his electric counterpart, but Thomas had an entirely unique body which ran on an inaccurate 0-4-0 chassis. As well as these, there were also clockwork sets which ran on normal 00 gauge track.
- Duck - made using the old Triang 57xx class tooling (retired)
- Gordon - made using the Triang LNER A1 class tooling with a six-wheeled tender
- Gordon's composite and brake coaches - made using GWR coaches in a green and cream livery
- Cattle truck - made using the Triang moulding
Oddly, the cattle truck carried the words "TO BE RETURNED TO LEWES".
Neither models were a great success.
A battery-powered set including Thomas, Annie, Clarabel, Bertie, and a copy of Thomas and Bertie and Thomas Down the Mine was also released, which allowed children to recreate the story Thomas and Bertie. Thomas was unpowered, being pushed along by a motor in Annie. The track for this set was double sided; one side for Thomas and one side for Bertie.
- James - made using a Triang LMS 3F with altered moulding around the smokebox and extended frames
- Tar wagon
- James' composite and brake coaches
James was first advertised in 1988.
In the following years, Duck, Gordon, Diesel, the crane, the closed van, the cattle truck, the tar wagon and James' coaches were quietly retired. Annie was modified so that her face carried a surprised expression, rather than the smiling one previously carried. It was not until the 2000's that Hornby revamped their range, bringing Gordon, Duck, the tar wagon, and James' coaches back into production and revamping the track system.
A musical set was introduced with an 0-4-0 Thomas, Annie, Clarabel, and a battery powered station. Whilst Thomas moved around the track, the theme music would play.
- Bill and Ben (retired)
- Troublesome Truck 1 and 2
- 'Arry and Bert (retired)
- The Diesel - made with Hornby's Class 37 tooling (discontinued)
- Henry (retired)
- Fuel tanker
- Sodor Scrap Co. truck
- Country Station (retired)
- Water Tower and Signal Box pack (retired)
- Radio-Controlled Sound System (discontinued)
Diesel was also reintroduced.
The range got a huge revamp because of the 60th Anniversary so characters from the Railway Series were made and other items were based on Season 8.
- Oliver (retired)
- Stepney (retired)
- 7101 (retired; reintroduced 2012)
- Flying Scotsman (retired)
- Bertie (reintroduced from Thomas and Bertie Set; retired)
- Toad (retired)
- Old Slow Coach
- Weathered brakevan (retired)
- The circus train, with twelve wagons (retired)
- Cream Tanker (retired)
- Raspberry Syrup Tanker (retired)
- Ice Cream Van (retired)
- Maithwaite Station (retired)
- Water Tower (retired)
- Signal Box (retired)
- Double Engine Shed (retired)
- Tunnel (retired)
- Goods Yard Crane (retired)
Reworked versions of the cattle truck and crane were introduced.
- Edward (discontinued)
- Red open wagon (retired)
- Light blue open wagon
- Oil tanker (retired)
- Red oxide vent van
- Light grey vent van
- Cream utility wagon (retired)
- Sodor mail coach (retired)
- Three circus tents and three circus stalls (retired)
- Dryaw Station (retired)
- Windmill (retired)
- Another Signal Box (retired)
- Emily (discontinued)
Emily was meant to be released in 2006, but her release was delayed until January 29th, 2007.
- Spencer (retired)
- Great Waterton Station (retired)
- Stanley's Shed (retired)
- Waterton Butchers (retired)
- Blacksmiths (retired)
- Post Office (retired)
- Ben's Books (retired)
- Ed's Garage (retired)
- Great Waterton station platform (retired)
500 limited-edition tired Thomas models were also released.
- The Breakdown Train
- Works Unit van
- Two lime wagons
- Station and platform (cancelled)
- Engine shed (cancelled)
- Goods shed (cancelled)
- Signal box (cancelled)
- Water tower and crane (cancelled)
- Footbridge (cancelled)
- Platform with canopy (cancelled)
1000 models each of Thomas, Percy and James were released, celebrating 100 years of the birth of the Rev W Awdry which include a Royal Mail covered envelope with a stamp of a character and a certificate.
- Spencer's Composite Coach
- Spencer's Brake Coach
- Tank Wagon Pack
- Open Wagon Pack
- Closed Van Wagon Pack
Spencer and Stepney were reintroduced with a limited release of 1,000 models each.
The newer sets are supplied with a "Midi-Mat" with printed scenery and track layout, enough track to create a basic oval, an engine and rolling stock, a transformer and a power clip. Customers were encouraged to purchase further Thomas-branded "track packs", "building packs" and other models to complete the layout printed on the mat.
- Thomas Set
- Gordon Set
- James Set
- Percy Set
- Diesel Set
- Duck Set
- Thomas and Percy Set
- Thomas' Musical Ride Set
- Thomas and Bertie Set
- Radio-Controlled Thomas
- Radio-Controlled Thomas and Percy
- Radio-Controlled Toby
- Thomas Passenger Set
- James Passenger Set
- Percy at the Circus Set
- Thomas and Bill Set
- Thomas and the Great Discovery set (retired)
- Thomas Set (reintroduced 2012)
- Thomas and Percy (cancelled)
- Thomas and Friends Passenger and Goods (reintroduced 2012)
- Percy and the Mail Train Set
- Thomas and the Breakdown Train Set
- Bill and Ben's models originally had yellow wheels.
- Emily is a repainted GWR Dean Achilles Class model. However, this has been highly criticized by modelers, as it is very inaccurate to Emily's true basis.
- To date, Percy is the only engine to have been built from scratch. All other models use existing bodies from previous Hornby models.
- Spencer's wheels are black.
- Edward is a repainted Shire class, minus cylinders and valve gear. This also accounts for his out-side steam pipes protruding from his smokebox.
- The Great Discovery set came with an exclusive tired and weathered Thomas and weathered versions of Annie and Clarabel.
- Flying Scotsman appears in Thomas and Friends with two tenders, but the Hornby model only has one.
- For an unknown reason, 'Arry and Bert's faces look like Splatter and Dodge's.
- Bertie was first released in 1987 in a Thomas and Bertie set. He was later released seperately in 2005.
- The mail coaches originally had four wheels; now, they have eight.
- Flying Scotsman has Gordon's face.
- Duck and Diesel had prototype faces when they were featured in the 1987 catalouge.
- The Thomas and Bertie set was later reused as a Fireman Sam set.
- Dart's model has side rods.
- Murdoch's name is written in black on his nameplates.