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This article is about the character. You may be looking for the episode or the Story Library book.

“Free the roads. Free the roads from Railway Tyranny!”
―Bulgy to Duck[src]

Bulgy is a bad-tempered double-decker bus with an ideological opposition to railways. His favourite phrase is "Free the roads!"


When he first came to Sodor, Bulgy had attempted to steal Duck and Oliver's passengers but got stuck under a bridge. Eventually, he was converted into a henhouse and placed near the said bridge.

Bulgy was soon later given a second chance and brought back to the road to help with passengers while Thomas and Emily needed repairs. However, his driver brought him back to his field for the night after he was restored and the chickens who had lived in him nestled on his luggage racks and caused trouble the following morning. Under Emily's suggestion, he decided to become a mobile vegetable stand. Bulgy enjoyed his new green livery and his work delivering vegetables — they do not lay eggs and they never complain. Throughout the rest of the model series, Bulgy made few appearances in both his green and red liveries.

Bulgy returned in the twenty-first series, much to Thomas' confusion, to which Bulgy explained that he was put back into service; this was to help Thomas while Bertie was being mended. Bulgy expressed his belief that it would be better if passengers simply used roads instead of railways, but Sir Topham Hatt reminded him not to return to his anti-rail ways, lest he find some chickens that needed a place to stay, so Bulgy relented and apologised.

Once, Bulgy accidentally caused a chain reaction that catapulted a bag of soil into a nearby water tower and contaminated the water that Thomas took on. Bulgy was the only one to witness, but instead of telling Thomas not to take it, he decided to use it to his advantage as an opportunity to take more passengers while the engines became ill and unable to work. When Bertie's engine was damaged due to the amount of passengers he was carrying, Bulgy offered to take his passengers for him. However, Bulgy took on more than he thought he could handle and eventually broke his axles. The engines were soon well enough to work and much to Bulgy's dismay, he had to be taken to the repair garage by Thomas.


Bulgy was at first very grumpy, formerly cold-hearted and cynical double-decker bus who firmly believed that roads are superior to railways and would occasionally lie to get himself out of trouble. After being restored, he saw the error of his ways and changed his attitude.

Nowadays, he means well and works hard, and while he still believes passengers should travel by road—if the chance comes, he is willing to take advantage of an engine's inability to take passengers, even if it means sabotaging them if he thinks he can get away with it. However, Sir Topham Hatt keeps a close watch on him and makes sure that he is on his best behaviour, gently reminding Bulgy about what happens when he is not. Bertie also serves to mediate his opposing personality.

According to the "Character Cube" bonus features of several US DVDs, Bulgy has no scruples and knows how to tell a lie when he is in a tight jam and is good friends with Diesel.

Technical Details


Bulgy is based on an AEC Bridgemaster double-decker bus. his friend, the Special Bus Service and the Australian Buses are also members of this class.


Bulgy is painted scarlet and cream. He has a sign on his left side reading "RAILWAY BUS" and another sign on his right side reading "JOIN THE ANTI-RAIL LEAGUE" - this was replaced with another "RAILWAY BUS" sign when he was restored. He also has signs on his front and back, reading "FREE THE ROADS" and a nameplate above his rear door.

For a brief time, Bulgy was painted green and cream while acting as a vegetable bus. When he was repainted, the signs on his sides were replaced with green ones reading "MOBILE GROCERY STORE" in white. In a tenth series Learning Segment, he was repainted back into his original scarlet and cream livery.


Audio Files


In the seventh series, Bulgy reuses and shares Sir Topham Hatt's Car's horn sound from the sixth to seventh series.

First used Last used Sound Effect
Series 7


Bulgy's bell sound from the third series is a variant of Toby's bell from the second to third series, but 8 steps and 6 semitones higher in pitch.

First used Last used Sound Effect
Series 3

When he returned in the twenty-first series, Bulgy gained a new bell sound.

First used Last used Sound Effect
Series 21 Series 24


  • Bulgy has a special nameboard that was only shown on airings in Japan.
  • Even though Oliver states that he only calls Bulgy such in his debut episode, his nameplates still read Bulgy.
  • In the Railway Series, one of Bulgy’s catchphrases was “down with railways.” This phrase was omitted in the television series until he returned in Unscheduled Stops, in which he uses the phrase at the end.
  • According to the clearance sign that appears on the bridge, Bulgy is approximately fourteen feet and nine inches tall.
  • Bulgy uses Dunlop branded tires.
  • In the UK narration, Bulgy developed a nasal voice in the seventh series, and in the US narration, Bulgy developed a stuffy-nosed voice.
  • According to the magazine story, Playbus, Bulgy and Bertie are cousins.
  • The Official Website mistakenly stated that he was converted into a refreshment stand rather than a vegetable bus.
  • In magazines, he has been converted into a playbus and a greenhouse.
  • In the German dub, Oliver gave Bulgy the nickname "Pfau", which is the German word for peacock. But since the twenty-third series he is referred by his original name.
  • Bulgy's sad face is currently owned by Twitter user ThomasTankMerch.
  • His face was used by Rocky during the Days Out with Thomas events.
  • A Tomy Wind-up Bulgy briefly appears in the Baby Einstein video, "Baby Newton - All About Shapes" during the rectangle segment.
  • Bulgy is the last non-human character to be re-introduced in the CGI series after a period of absence.
  • According to SiF, Bulgy was intended to be the main character of one episode in the twenty-first series. This episode, along with seven others, was cancelled to make way for the production of the twenty-second series.
  • Bulgy was only seen in his green livery in two episodes, those being Bulgy Rides Again and Follow that Flour. He was reverted back to his red livery in a tenth series learning segment and Excellent Emily.


Non-rail vehicles

* RWS only | ** T&F only | *** Other Media only