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"Why do people always think it's me who's always grumbling? I mean, I've never grumbled in my life! Me? Grumbling? Don't think so!"
— Duncan, Duncan and the Grumpy Passenger, eighteenth season

Duncan is a narrow gauge tank engine who came to the Skarloey Railway as a spare engine after Peter Sam's accident with the slate trucks.


Duncan has also been very cocky, but this has often fired back at him. His driver and firemen spooked him one evening when fireflies formed the shape of an engine. This put Duncan in his place, thinking he had just seen a ghost. His ego once landed him in a swamp, after being careless working on the incline railway.

Duncan is well known and often teased for his temper. He has met his match before, a passenger who grumbled more than him! Despite his rough exterior, he heroically helped Luke up a hill around Christmas time, showing his kinder side.

He currently works on the Skarloey Railway, with Skarloey, RheneasSir Handel, Peter Sam, Rusty and Luke.

A while later, Duncan was at Crovan's Gate when he saw Hugo race by the station surprising him and Sir Handel, who were both wondering if that was an engine.


Duncan is a Scottish narrow gauge engine. He initially arrived to the Skarloey Railway as a spare engine after Peter Sam had a nasty accident with some trucks that broke free from the incline. He was prone to boisterous bouncing about, which became known as "rock 'n' roll", whenever the mood took him, which once led to derailing in the mouth of a tunnel (probably caused from keystones knocked down by his funnel) and later again on a stretch of line towards Cros-ny-Cuirn. He often grumbles and complains, usually about not being polished or being over-worked, and can be rude, rough, and bad tempered. He claims to be a plain-speaking engine who believes in plain speaking, an approach which can cause him to make callous or belligerent remarks. Duncan can be a competitive engine too, particularly with James. He can be careless and make rash decisions which usually leads to his own downfall, but is not always quick to apologise or realise the error of his ways. However, upon Skarloey recalling Rheneas' gallant act to get his passengers home, Duncan admitted he had the wrong attitude and tried hard to be a more useful, respectable engine in future. In spite of his ways, Duncan can be a little misunderstood as he is focused, confident, resourceful and has a big heart.


Duncan is based on the Talyllyn Railway's Douglas, an Andrew Barclay 0-4-0WT. This engine is currently selected to be dressed up as Duncan on special events associated with the "Thomas the Tank Engine" franchise.


In the Railway Series, Duncan is painted in the Skarloey Railway's red livery with blue-and-yellow lining. In the television series he is painted golden yellow with black lining and gold boiler bands.


Television series

Voice Actors


  • One of Duncan's models is currently on display in Japan.
  • One magazine image shows Duncan with a tender.
  • His Take' n' Play prototype has white wheels just like his Take Along model.
  • Duncan's latest wooden railway model has a lamp for a whistle.
  • Duncan has had several modifications over the series. These include:
    • Season 18:
      • Red running board.
      • Lamp, lamp iron, and brakepipe, all of which were requested by Sam Wilkinson.
      • Slightly thinner funnel.
      • Slightly smaller dome and windows.
      • Smaller boiler and slightly larger cab.
      • Brass nameplate.
      • Shorter and wider sand dome.
      • Sanding gear under the cab.
      • Riveting under his coal bunker.
      • Outdented and unpainted lining on his cab and bunker.
      • Smaller in size than both his original model and his basis.
      • His eyes, nose and eyebrows returned to how they were in the fourth season.
  • The Reverend W. Awdry's model of Duncan is currently on display at the Narrow Gauge Museum in Tywyn.
  • Throughout the fourth and fifth seasons, Duncan's model lacked a whistle, yet he was still heard whistling on many occasions. This error was fixed in the sixth season when he gained a whistle.
  • Duncan is the only narrow gauge engine whose whistle sound has not changed since the fourth season.
  • Duncan is so far the only Skarloey Railway engine, in the CGI Series, to not be shown working at the Blue Mountain Quarry.


  • ERTL (normal and metallic; discontinued)
  • Wooden Railway (discontinued)
  • Take Along (discontinued)
  • Take-n-Play
  • Motor Road and Rail (discontinued)
  • TrackMaster (normal, Duncan Does it All, and The Runaway Elephant versions)
  • My Thomas Story Library (discontinued)
  • Thomas Engine Collection Series (discontinued)
  • Mini Die Cast Collection (with connected green narrow gauge coach; discontinued)
  • Departing Now (discontinued)
  • Trading Cards (discontinued)
  • De Agostini (discontinued)
  • Brio (discontinued)
  • Nakayoshi (discontinued)
  • Capsule Plarail (normal and metallic)
  • Departing Now
Skarloey Railway
SkarloeyRheneasSir HandelPeter SamRustyDuncan
Mighty MacFreddieLukeProteus

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