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"Why, bless me, if we haven't left them behind!"
— Thomas
Thomas' Train/
A Big Day for Thomas

David Mitton


Britt Allcroft
David Mitton
Robert D. Cardona


Reverend W. Awdry
Britt Allcroft
David Mitton (adapted)


Ringo Starr (UK/US)
George Carlin (US)

Air date

September 17th,
1984 (UK)
February 12th,
1989 (US)

Previous episode

Edward, Gordon
and Henry
Henry to
the Rescue

Next episode

Thomas and
the Trucks
Trouble for

Thomas' Train, retitled A Big Day for Thomas in American releases, is the fifth episode of the first season. It aired in the US on the Shining Time Station episodes, "And the Band Played Off" and "Stop the Press!".


Thomas was grumbling to the other engines; he was tired of pulling coaches about and wanted to pull a passenger train himself. The big engines only laughed. They knew that "Thomas was a little engine with a long tounge". But one night, Henry was ill. The workmen worked hard through the night, but the big green engine didn't get better. Henry always pulls the first train, but with him out of commision, Thomas hopes that he will be able to pull it. At the station, everyone is waiting for Henry. At last the Fat Controller agrees that Thomas will have to pull the train. No one knows what happened next, but Thomas is not coupled to the coaches when he puffs off.

As Thomas puffs along, people wave and shout at him. Thomas assumes that it is because they have never seen him pull a passenger train before and he whistles back. Soon, Thomas comes to a signal set at "danger" and has to stop. The signalman walks over to Thomas and asks him what he's doing. Thomas tells the signalman he's pulling a train, but the signalman informs Thomas that he is not pulling anything. Thomas is so sad that he nearly cries. He quickly reverses back to the station to start again. At the station, the angry passengers are complaining, but when they see how sorry Thomas looks they soon forget to be cross. Thomas is now coupled to the train and this time he really does pull it.

But for a long time afterwards, the larger engines teased Thomas for his mistake.




  • This episode is based on the story of the same name from The Railway Series book, Thomas the Tank Engine.
  • While Thomas is shunting the coaches, a truck with "NE" on the side can be seen in the siding.
  • The signalbox at Knapford is called a "signal tower" in the US narrations.
  • The line "but for a long time afterwards, the other engines laughed at Thomas and said, 'Look! There's Thomas who wanted to pull a train, but forgot about the coaches!'" is changed to "Afterwards, the other engines laughed at Thomas and said, 'Look! There's Thomas who wanted to pull a train, but forgot about the coaches!' But Thomas had already learned not to make the same mistake again" in the US narration.


  • Edward was said to have teased Thomas as well. Isn't he supposed to be kind?
  • Two clocks can be seen at Platform 1. The green clock reads 7:00; the red clock 12:00.
  • As Thomas is shunting the coaches for Henry's train, James puffs past with a passenger/goods train. Isn't Henry's train supposed to be the first train of the day?
  • Thomas' brake coach is facing the wrong way.
  • When Thomas passes the signal box without his train, his eyes are wonky.
  • The man with the blue hat and coat on the bridge is one of Thomas' passengers.
  • In a close-up of Thomas, his wheels are going at a different pace to the background.
  • When the others tease Thomas, Gordon is amongst them, but a few seconds earlier he was several hundred meters ahead.
  • In the close-up of Thomas puffing down the line, look at his coupling and you'll see a rope pulling him along.
  • When Thomas first shunts the coaches, the back buffers of the coach are at their normal height. A few scenes later however, the buffers were lowered to accommodate Thomas' buffers. But, in every scene after that, they're at their normal height again.
  • James appears briefly, but he isn't introduced until Thomas and the Breakdown Train.
  • Percy can be seen behind a goods train but isn't introduced until Trouble in the shed.

In Other Languages

Language Name Meaning
Spanish Un gran día para Thomas / Thomas Expreso A Big Day for Thomas / Thomas Express
Hebrew הרכבת של תומס Thomas' Train
Japanese トーマスのしっぱい Thomas' Failure
Norwegian Toget til Thomas Thomas' Train
Brazilian Portuguese Uma Surpresa Para o Thomas / Um Grande Dia Para Thomas A Surprise For Thomas / A Great Day for Thomas
Welsh Trên Tomos Thomas the Train
Slovenian Tomažev Vlak Thomas' Train
French Le Train de Thomas Thomas' Train
Italian Il Trenino di Thomas Thomas' Train
Hungarian Thomas Vonata Thomas' Train
Dutch De Trein van Thomas Thomas' Train
Swedish Thomas tar tåget Thomas Takes the Train
Chinese 托马斯的火车 Thomas' Train
Korean 토마스와 실수 Thomas and Mistakes
Polish Pociąg Tomka Thomas' Train
Finnish Tuomas-Veturin Juna Thomas-the Tank Engine's Train
Romanian Trenul lui Thomas Train of Thomas
Slovak Thomasov vlak Thomas' Train
German Thomas' Zug Thomas' Train
Russian Поезд Томаса Thomas' Train
Czech Tomášův vlak Thomas' Train
Danish Da Thomas trak et tog When Thomas Pulled a Train
Serbian Tomasova voz Thomas' Train
Croatian Tomicina Vlak Thomas' Train
Thai โธมัสดีใจ Thomas is Delighted


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