Thomas The Train is a fictitious steam locomotive in the books of the Railway Series by the Reverend Wilbert Awdry and his son, Christopher, published from 1945 onwards. He became the most popular character in the series, and is the main character on television that accompanies the spin-off sequence Thomas & Friends.
Thomas is a steam engine and has a number 1 painted at his side. All locomotives in the Railway Series were based on prototype engines; Thomas has origins in the E2 class designed by Lawson Billinton in 1913. Thomas first appeared in 1946 in the second book of the series, Thomas, the engine of the tank, and was the focus of the four tales contained within. Thomas ‘ best friends are Percy and Toby.
In 1979, the British writer Britt Allcroft came through the books, and arranged an agreement to bring the stories to life as the television sequence Thomas the engine of tanks and friends (later simplified to Thomas & Friends). The program has become an award-winning success worldwide, with a wide range of spin-off commercial products.
Thomas’s screen appearances on the television sequence were developed by Britt Allcroft. The first sequence of 26 stories debuted on October 1984 in the ITV network in the UK, with former drummer/vocalist of the Beatles Ringo Starr as narrator. The stories were presented as segments as part of the weather station shining in the United States from 1989 to Starr as the character of the show Sr. Maestro. From 1991 to 1993, George Carlin replaced Starr as the narrator and as Mr. Master of the brilliant weather station. Carlin also told Thomas’s stories to the brilliant weather station in 1995.