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“No passengers means no polish!"
"No polish means no passengers. (And no polish means no passengers. - US Narration)”
―Sir Topham Hatt and Duncan

Passengers and Polish is the thirteenth episode of the fourth season.


Nancy, the guard's daughter, has just finished polishing Skarloey while reminding him that Rheneas is coming home. Skarloey asks Nancy to polish him again. Duncan wants a polish too, but Nancy does not have time because she has to help The Refreshment Lady with the passengers. Duncan is very cross and complains about Peter Sam getting a special funnel, Sir Handel getting special wheels and passengers getting refreshments while he does not even get polished.

His driver then tells him that one of Skarloey's coaches has come off the rails and they are to help clear the mess and Duncan sulks about all the extra work. Duncan brings workmen to get the coach back on the rails and he has to take the passengers home. Duncan makes the journey back very difficult, so his driver decides to stop to build up steam, but Duncan does not try, accusing his driver that he does not care enough about him. Finally, they start off again, but Duncan loses his patience and rudely stalls on the viaduct. He refuses to go on and stays put. Skarloey pulls him home, with the passengers cross and telling everyone what a bad railway it is.

That evening, the Fat Controller scolds Duncan, telling him that "no passengers means no polish." And Duncan retorts under his breath that "no polish means no passengers," but however still has a lot to learn.




  • This episode is based on the story of the same name from The Railway Series book, Gallant Old Engine.
  • Stock footage from A Bad Day for Sir Handel is used.
  • Nancy's rag is a piece of blu-tak.
  • This episode marks Nancy's only speaking role to date, and the only time in the series that she is referred to by name.
  • When the passengers are complaining, one of them can be heard saying "We're losing money!"
  • In the UK version says "Ices" but in the US version says "Ice-cream".
  • In a picture used on the "Thomas and His Friends Get Along " VHS cover, Duncan's face is edited to look neutral, while his reflection shows him wearing his angry face.


  • Sound effects begin before Duncan is seen moving off out of the shed.
  • In the close-up of Duncan complaining about not being polished at the beginning, his face moves. In the same shot, a hair or piece of wire can be seen behind Skarloey.
  • After Duncan takes away Skarloey's train, the brake van moves from the front of the train to the back.
  • When Duncan passes through Crovan's Gate, he has a different whistle sound.
  • Rheneas is seen in the sheds at the end of the episode, but he is suppose to be at works.
  • In a picture of the Fat Controller scolding Duncan, the battery for Duncan's eye mechanism can be seen behind him.


Home Media ReleasesEdit

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UK DVD PacksEdit

AUS DVD PacksEdit


  • Thomas and Stepney and other Stories


  • Thomas and Stepney (Norwegian VHS)










DVD BoxsetsEdit