This article is about the engine. You may be looking for the song, the Story Library book or the Engine Adventures book.

Emily is a Stirling Single tender engine who has a big heart and acts as a sisterly figure to the other engines despite being fussy and impulsive at times. Following her rescue of Gordon from a collapsing bridge and JamesPercy and Rebecca from a derailment, she was rewarded with being appointed safety engine, gaining her number with it.

She works mostly on the Main Line and once ran the Misty Valley Branch Line. She also has her own set of coaches.


Thomas & Friends

When Emily was new to Sodor, she was ignored by the other engines for borrowing and pulling Annie and Clarabel without Thomas' permission or knowledge. The matter was resolved after she saved both Thomas and Oliver from nearly having a nasty accident on the cross-points and she was rewarded with two new coaches. Emily proved to be kind-hearted, as she was the only engine concerned about Henry when he was ill due to leaky tubes, when she stuck up for Salty when Thomas and Percy were teasing him, and suggests that Bulgy should help the farmer deliver his vegetables around the island, after his passenger services went wrong with some naughty hens.

However, Emily has proven to be a nuisance on occasion as she bossed everyone about when they were clearing up after a storm; Thomas when taking passengers and Percy when shunting trucks. When pulling the express for the first time, she was determined to keep to Gordon's timing, only to run out of water.

Later on she was assigned to the Flour Mill, while James was assigned to the Misty Valley Branch Line, primarily the Black Loch. James told her that there was a monster in the Loch. She had trouble with the Flour Mill and ended up crashing some trucks off the line. She was later reassigned to the Misty Valley Branch Line replacing James. She discovered that the monster was just a family of seals. She is presumed to still work the line as it has never been stated otherwise.

When Thomas had to stay at Knapford Sheds, Emily did not like his company at first as she did not want any noise; she just wanted some sleep. However, she learned how comfortable it is to have the company of friends, missing Thomas once he left the sheds. Originally disappointed once Tidmouth Sheds was rebuilt, to her pleasure, she was transferred there to be with her new shed mates, as the shed gained a seventh berth.

Like most engines, Emily can get quite puffed up in the smokebox. When she was called "Excellent Emily," she ignored the advice of Murdoch, Thomas and Duck, only to get herself into trouble. Afterwards, she took their advice to get her job done.

Emily tries her best to make her friends happy. When she assumed that Mavis was sad, she took flowers to the quarry, but only created a mess. When she tried to help her friends with the football/soccer match, she neglected to fetch the dirty washing, which turned out to be the football team's uniforms. Also, when the Fat Controller lost his top hat, Emily went to find it without success and then took the special Christmas train without permission. However, she made amends for her friends' sake.

She later took Paxton to the Vicarstown Dieselworks after he was damaged during an accident at the Blue Mountain Quarry.

When Thomas hid his snowplough, Emily had to do Thomas' work and saved him when he got stuck in the snow again.

Thomas told Emily about the Flatbeds of Fear, but Emily did not believe in it and said there was a sensible explanation. She eventually believed in it, until Thomas told her that it was just one of Salty's tall tales. Later, she was very excited to collect a special which was a giant model of a globe of the world to take it to the Animal Park. However, it accidentally fell off and she spent some time chasing after it.

When the Steam Team tried to clear the tracks of snow for Connor to deliver the last train for Christmas, Emily was unable to clear them from the Sodor side, but was happy to see Hiro as he cleared it from the other direction, then was disappointed when they mistook Harold for Father Christmas by believing his red port lamp to be Rudolph's nose.

She was later informed by Paxton about the rumour that Toby was to be scrapped, but Henrietta overheard and knew it was not true. Emily took her to find Toby and once they found him safe, Emily gave him some of her coal.

When Henry confided in Emily that he feared catching chickenpox from Stephen and Bridget Hatt, she assured him that he could not get chickenpox, joking that he worries too much.

She became fascinated with Caitlin being able to go at such high speeds and wondered what it would be like to be fast, becoming depressed when she could not do so. However, in the end, she managed to save Caitlin when she descended down a steep hill with broken brakes.

When Thomas was fed up with Diesel's selfishness during the holidays, Emily partook in Thomas' plan to mend the diesel's ways, much to her joy and amusement. She later attended the Earl's Christmas lunch with several other engines, including Thomas and a reformed Diesel.

Emily went with the other Sodor engines to be part of the Great Railway Show, competing in the Best Decorated Engine Parade along with James, Carlos, Rajiv and Yong Bao, but she and James lost to Rajiv. After Percy dropped out of the Shunting Challenge, she encouraged Thomas to take his place, declaring him Sodor's last chance to win.

Once, when the Fat Controller was ill, Dowager Hatt took charge of the railway. She assigned Emily to Thomas' job of pulling Annie and Clarabel, while Gordon was assigned to her job of taking scrap to the scrapyards. This resulted in lots of confusion and delay, culminating with a massive hold up outside of Knapford. Emily pointed this out to the Dowager and was able to help her get things back on track before the Fat Controller returned.

Later, she helped Donald and Douglas pull a heavy train of steel pipes to Vicarstown, but the journey became difficult when the twins kept teasing each other and arguing about swapping places. When they stopped on Gordon's Hill, Emily was left holding the train while Donald and Douglas continued to bicker. Eventually, Emily slipped down the hill and was knocked off the rails by a giant, heavy snowball, which had formed from a lump of coal shaken out of Donald's tender when Douglas bumped him. Once Harvey had cleared up the mess, Emily took the front while both twins pushed and they reached Vicarstown without any further trouble.

Following a storm on the Island of Sodor, Emily took the Sodor Rangers on a camping trip to Callan Castle, so that Nia had more time to finish her shunting in the yards. After going over bumpy and flooded tracks, Emily ended up derailing whilst trying to get a fallen tree off of the line. Later that night, Nia brought her the truck of camping supplies she had forgotten to pick up from the yards - fortunately, the Rangers were able to set up a camp using the survival skills they had learned. Emily and Nia stayed with them throughout the night and the next morning she was put back onto the tracks.

One time at Tidmouth Town Square, an unveiling of a sand sculpture was to take place. Sir Topham Hatt sent the Steam Team off in pairs to help out. Emily didn't have anyone to work with and was worried. She got so distracted trying to find other engines to work with she nearly forgot about her job of delivering the final load of sand to finish off the sand sculpture. When Emily went back for it, her trucks were missing. She went to the unveiling and informed Thomas. Luckily, Thomas noticed Emily forgot her trucks so he delivered them for her. Emily feeling revealed, thanked Thomas and was happy to be surrounded by but such good friends.

After fetching Rocky to save multiple engines from an accident, the Fat Controller rewarded her actions by making her the railway's official "safety engine" in addition to giving Emily a number, twelve.


Emily was introduced as being kind, caring, helpful, mature, compassionate and always sensitive to others' feelings. If she wrongs someone, knowingly or not, she is quick to apologise.

From the eighth to the sixteenth series, however, Emily experienced a personality change, developing a habit of being fussy, bossy, rebellious and rude to others. She strove to be the best and sometimes caused mishaps, but always made up for them when she realised her errors.

From King of the Railway onwards, Emily has been portrayed more closely to her original personality, along with subtler shades of overconfidence. She often acts as a voice of reason, particularly when James gets too big for his wheels, or when a friend needs moral support. Recently, she has also been shown to be adaptable, able to think of a plan in a moment's notice. She is somewhat prone to jealousy or feelings of inadequacy, often longing for more excitement in her life when she hears of others' adventures, or for the same talents as them.

Technical Details


Emily is based on a Great Northern Railway G3 Stirling Single 4-2-2. Designed by Patrick Stirling in 1870 with 8ft 1in driving wheels and outside cylinders, they were specifically built for high speed expresses between London and York. These locomotives were capable of hauling 280 ton trains at 50 mph, though they could reach 85 mph on lighter services. A total of 53 were built at Doncaster between 1870 and 1895, in three series introduced in 1870, 1884 and 1894 respectively; the last was withdrawn in 1916. The only surviving member of her class (No. 1) is on display at the National Railway Museum. The locomotive in preservation carried a small capacity Sturrock tender, which was given in its first restoration in 1910. Recently, a derelict original Stirling Single tender used as a water and sludge carrier was found in Peterborough and, after restoration, was paired with the locomotive in 2014.


Emily is painted emerald green with yellow lining and brass fittings. She has chocolate coloured running-boards and her buffers were originally bronze, but have since turned silver. For the Great Railway Show, gold trim and flowers were added to her coat for her participation in the best-decorated engine parade. After she returned to Sodor, she was painted back again.

From Emily to the Rescue onwards, Emily has the number 12 painted on the middle square on each side of her tender in yellow with chocolate brown borders.


Thomas & Friends


Music Videos

Learning Segments


Magazine Stories

Emily also appears in the magazine stories, Arthur and Emily, Caught Out, Frying or Flying, Green Engine, Peep and Sleep, Picture Posters, Rushing Around, Seeing Steam, Take Off with Terence, The Camel Train, The Smartest Engine and Working Whistles

Annual Stories

  • 2013 - The Biggest Present of All (does not speak)

Video Games

Audio Files


First used Last used Sound Effect
Series 7 Series 7
Emily's S7 Freddie's and Peter Sam's S12 Whistle
First used Last used Sound Effect
Series 8 Series 17
Henry s Whistle
First used Last used Sound Effect
Calling All Engines! Series 12
Emily's S8 - 16 Whistle
First used Last used Sound Effect
Series 17 Active
Emily Whistle CGI


  • Emily was the second female steam engine and the first female tender engine introduced in the television series, as well as the fourth female engine in the television series overall, the first being Daisy, the second being Mavis, the third being Lady.
  • Michael Angelis, Pierce Brosnan and Teresa Gallagher give Emily a Scottish accent reflecting the origin of her designer. Due to one episode and one special featuring her having an English narrator, she ends up with a Scottish accent in the US dub. Other productions featuring her with a speaking role give her an American accent in the US dub.
  • One of Emily's models was on display in Canada at Nitrogen Studios. It is now part of the touring Thomas and Friends: Explore the Rails exhibit.
  • Emily is the first character besides Thomas himself to say his catchphrase, "Cinders and ashes!", which was done in the thirteenth series episode, Tickled Pink.
  • Some literary articles show her being sisterly mostly to Thomas and James. According to a magazine bio, she has a particular fondness for James and treats him like a little brother. In Railway Rhymes, the author states that Thomas and Emily act like brother and sister.
  • According to Emily's Slide Show, she was built around the same time as Donald and Douglas.
  • Emily's seventh series whistle sound would later be re-used for Peter Sam and Freddie:
    • It was also used in the Mr. Men Show episode "Parks."
    • From the eighth to the seventeenth series, she had the same whistle sound as Henry's.
  • Before Big World! Big Adventures!, Emily was the only member of the Steam Team not created by Wilbert Awdry, as well as the only female member up until the debuts of Nia and Rebecca and the only member who was not introduced in the first series, also being its newest member until Nia's and Rebecca's debut. Up until the twenty-fourth series, she was also the only member to lack a number, both before and after the addition of Nia and Rebecca.
  • Prior to the twenty-third series, she was the only Steam Team member without black buffers (which happened as a goof):
    • Surprisingly in most magazine stories and some forms of merchandising, Emily gains black buffers.
    • Emily is one of only two characters to have bronze buffers, then gain silver ones; the other is Spencer.
  • According to Robert Gauld-Galliers's concept art, Emily was originally going to have handrails on top of her smokebox, three front coupling chains and a gold builder's plate on her wheel arch. The handrails, though not present on the original model, would later be added as part of the twenty-third series updates to the Steam Team.
  • During the model series era, Emily had at least two different facial expressions (disgusted and wincing) that were not used on-screen.
  • Emily is the only remaining female engine in the series thus far, with separate English voice actors.
  • Emily's name was spelled Emilie in the French dub of the seventh series.
  • Emily was the first steam engine in the series to be seen with only two drive wheels and the first engine overall to gain her number on-screen.
  • Emily's Ertl Company bio states her large driving wheels cause her to struggle with traction, a factor that affected her basis, however this has never been stated nor shown in the show.
  • Prior to Nia's debut, Emily was the only Steam Team member not to speak in a British accent in the UK dub.
  • Emily shares her name with Hilary Fortnam's granddaughter. Fortnam was the youngest daughter of The Railway Series creator Wilbert Awdry.


“Perhaps there's something on the a hay cart!”
―Emily in the Middle
“Hello, I'm Emily. I'm an emerald green engine and I'm always ready to help a friend in need.”
―Emily's website audio
“Wow! An elephant and a dinosaur! And I'm just delivering sand.”
―Emily Saves the World




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