Thomas the Tank Engine Wikia
The Railway Series

For other uses, see Sir Topham Hatt (disambiguation).

Sir Charles Topham Hatt was the controller of the North Western Railway from 1954 to 1984.


Charles Topham Hatt was educated at Abbey School, Cronk and from there went to Crewe Works as an engineering pupil under Mr. William Stanier in 1932. He was present during Henry's rebuilding in 1935. In 1937, he was recommended for railway service overseas by Mr. Stanier, but he returned in 1939 to enlist in the Royal Engineers, serving with them throughout the Second World War. He was demobilised in 1945 with the rank of Colonel.

He spent a further period overseas, before returning to Sodor in 1952 to become Chief Mechanical Engineer at Crovan's Gate Works and general assistant to his ageing father. Following his father's retirement in 1954, the Board had no hesitation in electing him as Controller.

During his period of office, he began improvements to the harbour at Knapford, planned by his father and reopened the Arlesburgh branch in 1965/6, being responsible for the construction of the Arlesdale Railway and for establishing the ballast consortium which uses it.

His cousin, Sir Handel Lloyd Brown II, was born in 1924. He married Amanda Croarie in 1940 and they had two children, Stephen Topham, born in 1941 and Bridget, born in 1943. Charles inherited his father's baronetcy in 1956.



  • Out of the three Fat Controllers, Charles is the only one not to appear in Thomas & Friends, though his existence is somewhat implied as Stephen Hatt is stated to be the grandson of Sir Topham Hatt.
    • Some of The Railway Series stories in which Charles is the Fat Controller have been adapted during the second series, the third series, and the fourth series. Though there are still stories from those series where Sir Topham Hatt I is the Fat Controller in The Railway Series, as well as Special Attraction, which takes place while Sir Stephen Topham Hatt III is the controller in The Railway Series.
  • In John Gielgud's narration of The Fat Controller's Engines, he incorrectly stated that Charles' first name was "Derek".


The Railway Series

Main Series


* RWS only | ** T&F only | --- Dropped