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“Never trust domeless engines! They're not respectable!”

Gordon and the Famous Visitor is the fourth episode of the third series. It is based on the story Domeless Engines from The Railway Series book, Duck and the Diesel Engine.


It is an important day at the yards as a special visitor had arrived and was now the centre of attention, with many people taking photographs and making notes. Duck explains to Thomas and Percy that he is a celebrity, a very famous engine and they will have the chance to talk to him later, although Thomas believes that the Visitor is too famous to want to talk to them. Thomas, Duck, Percy and the other engines are very pleased about the Visitor, but Gordon is jealous as he thinks it is a lot of fuss about nothing. The other engines are happy to find that, contrary to Thomas's expectations, the Visitor is friendly and he enjoys talking to Sodor's engines well into the night.

The next morning, the visitor heads back to his railway, and Thomas tells Gordon that the engine is famous since he went 100 mph before Gordon was even thought of. Gordon is unamused and tells Thomas that the visitor has no dome and that domeless engines are not respectable or trustworthy as far as he is concerned, and that 100 mph would be easy for him.

Later that day, Duck takes some trucks to Wellsworth and tells Edward what Gordon had said about the visitor. Edward tells Duck not to take any notice, since Gordon thinks that no engine should be famous but him. Moments later, Gordon thunders past the two engines on the main line as his wheels pound the rails. Duck watches and tells Edward that Gordon will knock himself to bits.

Gordon's driver tells him that he is not running a race, but Gordon takes no notice. Gordon then notices that the top of his boiler feels funny as something feels loose and decides to slow down, but it is too late. On the viaduct, he meets a teasing wind that makes him think it will push him off. But the wind has other ideas as it curls around Gordon's boiler and blows his dome off and into the valley below. Gordon is most uncomfortable as he feels silly without his dome, and to make matters worse for him, he is made into a laughing stock at Knapford Station by some trucks.

On the journey home, Gordon asks his driver to find his dome, but he tells Gordon that they will never find it now and Gordon will have to go to the works for a new one. Gordon is most upset and hopes that the sheds are empty tonight, but all the engines are there waiting. As Gordon turns around on the turntable, he hears a voice saying, "Never trust domeless engines. They aren't respectable."




  • Stock footage from Time for Trouble is used.
  • In a picture of a deleted scene, Thomas, Percy and Duck were at the other end of Tidmouth Sheds.
  • In a picture of a deleted scene, City of Truro's tender can be seen at the left of Gordon (viewer's right).
  • In a photo, Gordon is pulling red express coaches instead of green ones.
  • In a photo, Edward and Duck are at the station instead of the yard and Gordon races through the station on the left track rather than the middle.
  • In the UK and international versions, when the narrator said "Gordon was most uncomfortable" the music is omitted.
  • In a picture of a deleted scene, Gordon is seen crossing the viaduct in the opposite direction without his dome. Another photo features him on the viaduct with his dome, smiling.
  • This is the first time a real life engine appears in the television series.
  • There is a bulldozer from TUGS next to Gordon when he arrives at Tidmouth Sheds.
  • Although City of Truro's name is never mentioned, it is seen on the banner at Tidmouth Sheds and his nameplate.
  • When first repeated on CITV in 1993, Duck's conversation with Edward at Wellsworth was cut out to fit the time slot.
  • Henry is the only steam engine not present at the sheds during the City of Truro's visit. Minus Gordon, who passed by the sheds a few seconds later at the beginning of the episode.
  • This is the only episode until the twentieth series episode, Toby's New Friend, where Donald and Douglas make a cameo together.


  • In the close-up on Thomas and Duck at the sheds, Duck is derailed.
  • In one shot of Gordon talking to Thomas and Duck, he does not have any eyebrows.
  • In the first scene, Toby's front window is shattered.
  • Because of stock footage, Gordon seems to pass through Wellsworth twice.
  • After Gordon loses his dome, his coaches disappear.
  • When Gordon goes through Knapford, he is tilted to the right. In the same scene, the coach to the far left is seen with exposed wires around its buffers.
  • When Gordon races through the station, only one distant signal on its own can be seen, which is incorrect. Distant signals without home signals are only ever seen out on the open line.
  • When Thomas asks Duck, "Who's that?" Duck's right wheel is derailed.
  • When Duck talks to Edward, Edward's whistle is crooked.
  • When Henry passes Edward and Duck at Wellsworth, his eyes are misaligned.
  • In the last shot of the episode, Gordon's eyes are misaligned and his buffers are slightly crooked.


In Other Languages

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Language Title
Chinese 高登与著名访客
Czech Gordon a Slavny Host
Danish Gordon og den Berømte Gæst
Dutch Gordon en het Vreemde Bezoek
Finnish Jori ja Kuuluisa Vieras
German Eine Weltberühmte Lok
Hungarian Gordon és a Különleges Látogató
Italian Gordon e l'Ospite Famosa
Japanese ゴードンとゆうめいなきかんしゃ
Korean 날아간 보일러 덮개
Norwegian Gordon og den Berømte Gjesten
Polish Gabryś i Gwiazdor
Romanian Gordon și Vizitatorul Faimos
Russian Гордон и известный посетитель
Serbian Gordon i Poznati Posetilac
Slovak Gordon a Slávny Hosť
Slovenian Gorazd in Slavni Obiskovalec
Spanish Gordon y el Famoso Visitante
Swedish Gordon och den Berömde Gästen
Thai กอร์ดอนอิจฉา
Ukrainian Гордон і знаменитий гість
Welsh Gordon a'r Ymwelydd Enwog

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  • Complete Series 1-10
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