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Thomas and the Special Letter

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"Dear Thomas and all the engines, please, can I meet you? My friends say they would like to meet you, too. You can come to my house for tea, but my mummy says there aren't any railway tracks to my house. Can you come to the station instead? Thank you very much!"
— The letter
Thomas and the Special Letter

David Mitton


Britt Allcroft
David Mitton


Reverend W. Awdry
Britt Allcroft
David Mitton


Michael Angelis (UK)
George Carlin (US)

Air date

August 15th,
1995 (UK)
October 23rd,
1995 (US)
May 21st,
1996 (AUS)

Previous episode

Bulls Eyes

Next episode

Paint Pots and
Thomas Meets
the Queen

Thomas and the Special Letter is the twenty-second episode of the fourth season. It aired in the US on the Shining Time Station episode One of the Family in 1995 and Mr. Conductor's Thomas Tales in 1996.


Thomas is surprised to see some of the engines travelling to Tidmouth Sheds and follows them to get to the bottom of the matter. It turns out the first eight engines have been invited to the big city by a little girl eager to meet the engines, and the others are to do their work. Thomas is paired with Oliver to show him his branch line. Thomas is feeling excited and boasts about his race with Bertie, unluckily crashing through the buffers and into a wall. The workmen are sent to repair Thomas before the trip, and manage to do so just in time. One minute before it is time to leave, Thomas pants into the junction with his coaches, and follows after the other engines to the big city. Once the engines have arrived, Thomas tells Percy that a single letter can bring happiness.





  • Douglas is seen when the narrator says Donald spoke.
  • In Toby's third close-up, his face is loose.
  • Annie is facing backwards during the close-up of Thomas' driver.
  • When Thomas and Percy first leave Elsbridge, Toby isn't in his siding, but Henrietta is still there.
  • In Thomas and Bertie, Thomas remembers stopping "an inch from the buffers" after his race with Bertie. Though he may be exaggerating for effect, there are no buffers seen when Thomas stops at Ffarquhar after his race with Bertie.
  • It should have been impossible to repair Thomas' buffers in the space of a day with the damage he took.
  • As Henry leaves Elsbridge, one of his bogie wheels is loose.
  • In the Big City shed, Percy's cab roof is lifted slightly.
  • In the scene of the engines waiting for Thomas, James has a different whistle sound.
  • Donald, Duck and Gordon have the same whistle sound and Douglas has a different whistle sound.
  • During the panning shot of the engines when Sir Topham Hatt reads the little girl's letter, James and Gordon's eyes are wonky.
  • When Thomas starts talking to Oliver, some of the steam from his funnel disappears, indicating a film cut.
  • In the American narration, the term truck is used.
  • Mavis has a different horn sound.
  • In the close-ups of the Fat Controller giving the announcement, Duck's funnel looks different.
  • When the engines pass through the station toward the beginning, Oliver has Bill or Ben's whistle sound.
  • If Oliver, Donald, Douglas, BoCo, Mavis, Bill and Ben were doing the work for the engines that went to the big city, who was doing their work?
  • When James leaves Elsbridge, his eyes are wonky.
  • In the close-up of Thomas at Tidmouth Sheds, Percy's right lamp iron is bent.
  • In the shot of Thomas going down the embankment, he is seen going through the fence again, only it is already broken in that shot.


In other languages

Language Name Meaning
German Ein ganz spezieller Brief A Very Special Letter
Norwegian Thomas og det spesielle brevet Thomas and the Special Letter
Spanish Thomas y una carta muy especial Thomas and a Very Special Letter
Japanese トーマスととくべつなてがみ Thomas and the Special Letter


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