Thomas the Tank Engine Wikia

Adams, also known by his number, 488, is a large green tank engine who lives on the Bluebell Railway.


The Railway Series

Adams used to work on the London and South Western Railway and was later saved from scrap and brought for preservation by the Bluebell Railway Preservation Society.

When Stepney visited the Island of Sodor in 1962, he mentioned Adams in a conversation with Edward. He and Cromford did not have names then, so the other engines nicknamed him "Adams", after his designer, William Adams. According to Stepney, his controller was unaware of this name change and intended to keep it a secret between the engines. [1]


According to Stepney, Adams is a lovely engine who "can stroll away with any load he is given".

Technical Details

Real-life History

Adams is based on the real No. 488, a London and South Western Railway (LSWR) 415 class "Radial Tank" engine, built by Neilson and Company in Glasgow, Scotland on 31 March, 1885, for hauling goods on the LSWR. Unlike its counterpart in The Railway Series, it does not have the name "Adams". 488 spent the years 1919 to 1946 on Colonel Stephens' East Kent Light Railway, before being brought back to the Southern for use on the Lyme Regis to Axminster branch line in Devon, along with two other 415 class engines, the rest of which had gone before the Second World War. 488 was withdrawn from service on 31 July, 1961, and replaced by the ubiquitous London, Midland and Scottish Railway (LMS) Ivatt Class 2MT 'Mickey Mouse' 2-6-2 Tank engines [2] (one would later become Arthur's basis). 488 was then purchased by the Bluebell Railway, as it was the one having the original pattern of boiler.

488 is currently on static display on the Bluebell Railway as British Railways (BR) number 30583, the number and livery the engine carried until 1961 on the Axminster to Lyme Regis branch line in Devon.

Hornby has created a model of this engine.


Originally, Adams was painted in the LSWR Drummond Green with black and white lining livery. His LSWR number "488" was painted on his front buffer beam in yellow.

For the Bluebell Railway's Branch Line Weekend in March 2019, Adams was repainted in the BR black with red and white lining livery. His BR number "30583" was painted on the side his bunker in white. He also had the BR Ferret and Dartboard logo on the sides of his cab. His buffer beams are painted red with grey buffers.



  • Adams was sold to the Minister of Munitions during the First World War and worked at Ridham Dock near Sittingbourne, England.
  • Adams' Days Out with Thomas face is now owned by Twitter user LewRaccoon. [3] The face is now stored at the Bredgar and Wormshill Light Railway.
    • Originally the face was painted with the left-side eye open, peeking out of the shed. At some point before 2003 it was refurbished as a winking face and used with 80151 and later assigned for 75027.



* RWS only | ** T&F only