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Tender Engines

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This article is about the episode. You may be looking for the Buzz Book.
"Now if I had two tenders I wouldn't have to stop so often, and I wouldn't have to listen to silly little engines!"
— Gordon
Tender Engines

David Mitton


Britt Allcroft
David Mitton


Reverend W. Awdry
Britt Allcroft
David Mitton


Michael Angelis (UK)
George Carlin (US)

Air date

June 2nd,
1992 (UK)
August 25th,
1992 (JAP)
March 12th,
1993 (AUS)
May 20th,
1993 (US)

Previous episode

One Good Turn

Next episode


Tender Engines is the twentieth episode of the third season. In the US, it aired on the Shining Time Station episode, Mr. Conductor's Movie.


Gordon gets tired of getting told what to do by the other engines and claims that big engines have big needs and little engines are just annoying. Later, Gordon is impressed when he sees a visitor with two tenders and says that if he had two tenders, he would not need to listen to silly little engines.

However, he becomes depressed when Diesel gloats the Diesels' victory over steam on the mainland. He perks up when he is told by the Fat Controller that he will never be scrapped on Sodor and that the visitor had two tenders due to the lack of coal and water on the Mainland, but Henry is cross and grumbles he deserves two tenders for his work.

Duck, planning a trick, coerces Henry into pulling some spare tenders. Henry is delighted, but is less than thrilled when he finds they are all filled with boiler sludge.




  • This episode is based on the story "Tenders for Henry" from The Railway Series book, Enterprising Engines.
  • A photograph from this episode was released as a Royal Mail stamp in 2011 to mark the Reverend Awdry Centenary.
  • One of Henry's tenders has LMS written on the side, a possible reference to his basis, the LMS Black 5 Class. Some of the other tenders have "NE" on the sides, indicating that they are North Eastern Railway tenders.
  • Flying Scotsman was originally intended to have a larger role in this episode, but due to budgetary constraints the entire locomotive model could not be constructed.
  • This marks Diesel's last speaking role until the sixth season.
  • This episode marks the first time Donald is seen without Douglas.


  • When James first arrives at the coal chute to speak to Gordon, his pony truck is off the rails.
  • When James leaves the coal loader, his eyes are wonky.
  • A brakevan should have been added to Percy's train.
  • Flying Scotsman's second tender is a standard LNER corridor tender when it should be an auxiliary water tender.
  • When Henry bangs the trucks one bounces upward.
  • Henry's face is loose when he complains about always working hard enough for two tenders.
  • In the restored version, when Henry passes over the viaduct, you can see Percy on the track below. As Percy exits the shot, a shadow passes over the set. This is presumably a crew-members' hand picking up Percy before he falls off the set.
  • Before Henry comes out with the tenders, look at James; his first wheel is crooked.
  • Henry passes Thomas twice while pulling the tenders.
  • A camera tripod is seen when Gordon says "Don't be vulgar!"
  • Studio equipment can be seen when Gordon leaves Tidmouth.

In other languages

Language Name Meaning
Spanish A Cada Uno Lo Suyo To Each His Own
German Lokomotiven mit Kohlewagen Locomotives with Coal Wagons
Norwegian Kullvogner Coal Trucks
Japanese たんすいしゃがほしい I Want the Tender
Czech Tendry Tenders
Polish Wagony z Węglem Wagons with Coal



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