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Thomas and Stepney

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"Shunted! And on my own branch too! it's a disgrace!"
— Thomas
Thomas and Stepney

David Mitton


Britt Allcroft
David Mitton


Reverend W. Awdry
Britt Allcroft
David Mitton


Michael Angelis (UK)
George Carlin (US)

Air date

January 7th,
1995 (US)
August 7th,
1995 (UK)
May 13th,
1996 (AUS)

Previous episode

Rusty to the Rescue

Next episode

Train Stops Play

Thomas and Stepney is the sixteenth episode of the fourth season. It aired in the US on the Shining Time Station episode Once Upon a Time in 1995.


Thomas is shocked to learn that there is an engine with a branch line as famous as his and that the engine might visit. The engine, Stepney, has gotten bored with the Bluebell Railway and is delighted to discover he has been invited to visit the North Western Railway. When Thomas hears the news, he is jealous and refuses to meet Stepney, but the others welcome him and he works with Duck happily all day. When it is time for Thomas' last train, he is furious to be shunted to let another train pass, and amazed to find Stepney pulling it. Thomas grumbles next morning, but Stepney explains the situation and flatters Thomas, who proceeds to tell Stepney about his branch line.




  • This episode is based on the stories Bluebells of England and Stepney's Special from The Railway Series book, Stepney the "Bluebell" Engine.
  • In the UK and in various international versions, when the special is ordered, music is heard. This is absent in the US version. Towards the end of the episode, the background shunting noise is cut off and some whistle sounds are also missing in the US version.
  • On PBS Sprout airings, this episode uses the unrestored opening credits.


  • When Thomas puffs past the field at the beginning, studio equipment is visible in the top-right corner.
  • While Percy is telling Thomas about Stepney, as the camera is on Thomas, Percy's right lamp iron is bent but when the camera is on Percy, it is normal
  • While the engines wait for Stepney, a tar wagon, perched on another tar wagon, is visible behind Gordon and Henry.
  • Stepney has Smudger's whistle sound in the US version and Rheneas' in the UK and international versions. Rheneas' whistle is used once in the US version as well.
  • Stepney has Duke's whistle sound when he is working with Duck.
  • In the US version, when Percy finishes talking about Stepney, his whistle sound is higher pitched.
  • In the UK and various international versions, Gordon, Douglas, and Duck have the same whistle sound.
  • When Thomas says "Why are we waiting? My passengers are being delayed", a black box is attached to his cab.
  • George Carlin says "Stop all train!" instead of "Stop all trains!".

In other languages

Language Name Meaning
Spanish Thomas y Stepney Thomas and Stepney
German Stepneys Fahrt Stepney's Trip
Norwegian Thomas og Stepney Thomas and Stepney
Japanese トーマスとステップニー Thomas and Stepney
Finnish Severi Vauhdissa Stepney's Pace
Polish Tomek i Stefcio Thomas and Stepney



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