Thomas the Tank Engine Wikia
Main Page

This article is about the episode. You may be looking for the magazine story or the DVD.

“Phewey! You're the stinkiest steamie I've ever smelled!"
"I may be stinky, but I'm being really useful! Bye, Diesel!"
"Huh! Useful!”
―Diesel trying to tease Thomas

Thomas and the Rubbish Train, retitled Thomas and the Garbage Train for North American releases, is the seventh episode of the sixteenth series.


Thomas puffs into the docks, where the Fat Controller tells him to be a back engine for Whiff's long rubbish train destined for the dump. Thomas is happy to help his friend. Just as Thomas rolls up to the train, Diesel rattles by. He teases Thomas by saying that pushing the rubbish train will make him a smelly engine. Thomas dismisses Diesel's jibe and he and Whiff set off.

At Maron, Thomas and Whiff have to wait for a signal. On the platform, Thomas is surprised to see the Duchess of Boxford looking sad. She explains that she wants to go to tea with Lady Hatt, but Spencer is busy with the Duke. Thomas offers to take her after finishing his jobs. He tells her to go and wait for him at Wellsworth. The Duchess happily wanders away, leaving Thomas delighted with his very important job. Then Diesel's words echo in Thomas' mind. Thomas thinks that the Duchess will not want him to take her to tea with Lady Hatt if he smells of rubbish. The signal drops and Thomas and Whiff set off once again.

Whiff and Thomas soon arrive at a junction where one track leads to a branch line. Thomas has an idea. He decides to chuff down the branch line and meet back up with Whiff at the next junction. This way, Thomas does not have to be with the rubbish for so long. The signal changes and as Whiff continues along the main line, Thomas switches onto the branch line where he passes a meadow of flowers. Thomas rejoins Whiff at the next junction as planned. Whiff does not notice that Thomas has not been there, but is starting to show fatigue from the train's heavy load. Gordon grandly pulls up next to Thomas and remarks that both he and Whiff are really smelly. Thomas, who is feeling very embarrassed, decides he must find another track to get away from the rubbish. At the next junction, Thomas switches onto the coastal line and puffs alongside the sea. Thomas buffers back up to the rubbish train at the next junction. By now, the heavy rubbish train is taking its toll on poor Whiff. Suddenly, Emily whooshes by. She remarks that Thomas is a stinky engine, which makes Thomas blush with embarrassment and become very worried. So, at the next junction, Thomas diverts himself onto the track which passes the bakery.

At Wellsworth, the Duchess is waiting for Thomas, who is running late. Thomas rounds the bend into Wellsworth and does not see an exhausted Whiff standing at the platform until it is too late. Thomas collides with the rubbish trucks making them topple off the tracks, sending smelly rubbish and oily engine parts everywhere. The Duchess is shocked and asks Thomas if he is all right. Thomas is fine and confesses to being a very silly engine and at one point Thomas is embarrassed about his accident. Then, Thomas has an idea. He asks the Duchess to travel to Lady Hatt with Whiff while he fetches Rocky to help clear up the mess. The Duchess thinks this is a very good idea and Whiff feels honoured to have such an important passenger.

Later, Rocky has picked up all the rubbish and put it back into the trucks. Thomas huffs to the rubbish dump with his very heavy and smelly load. On the way, he meets up with Diesel, who calls Thomas stinky again. Thomas admits that he may be stinky, but he is being really useful. Diesel just scoffs.

On the way back from the rubbish dump, Thomas meets Whiff, the Duchess and Lady Hatt at the level crossing. The Duchess cheers for all of the very useful engines on Sodor.





US and CAN


  • According to writer Andrew Viner's website, this episode was commissioned/written in 2010.
  • Starting with this episode, Keith Wickham now gives Whiff a different tone of voice.
  • This episode marks with three things:
    • The first and only appearance of Tidmouth Beach and the lighthouse in CGI, marking its first appearance since the eleventh series episode, Thomas and the Lighthouse and its final appearance.
    • The only sixteenth series episode to have a different title for the UK and US.
    • The Duchess of Boxford's first speaking role since Hero of the Rails as well as her first speaking role in an episode.
  • This episode has similarities to the eleventh series episode, Emily's Rubbish.


  • In the camera shot capturing the aftermath of the accident at Wellsworth, a flatbed can be seen standing on the road behind the platform.
  • In the scene where Thomas talks about passing the bakery, the green and red rubbish trucks are clipping into each other.


In Other Languages

Language Title
Brazilian Portuguese Thomas e o trem de lixo
Czech Tomáš a vlak s odpadky
French Thomas et les mauvaises odeurs
Galician Tomás e o Tren do Lixo
German Thomas und der Müllzug
Hungarian Thomas és a szemétszállító vonat
Indonesian Thomas dan Kereta Sampah
Italian Thomas e il Treno dei Rifiuti
Japanese トーマスとゴミのかしゃ
Korean 쓰레기 열차가 갑니다! (dub)
토마스와 쓰레기 화차 (subtitles)
Latin American Spanish Thomas y el Tren de la Basura
Norwegian Thomas og søppeltoget
Polish Tomek i pociąg ze śmieciami
Romanian Thomas și Trenul cu Gunoi
Russian Да здравствует Свистун!
Taiwanese Mandarin 托马斯和垃圾货车

Home Media Releases