|This article is about the episode. You may be looking for the magazine story.|
- “Hello Rescue Team! I have the special special of bringing you Stafford, the electric shunting engine. Say 'hello,' Stafford."
"We may be missing something here, Spencer. But there's no one with you.”
- ―Spencer and Flynn
Welcome Stafford! is the seventeenth episode of the sixteenth series.
Spencer is on Sodor and is given the task of showing the new electric shunting engine, Stafford, around. Spencer puffs into Knapford station where he boasts to Thomas about his special task. Thomas has finished his jobs for the morning and is keen to meet the new engine. Spencer instructs Thomas to go to the Steamworks with him.
At the Sodor Steamworks, Spencer is not impressed when he is ignored due to everyone attending to Stafford. After making himself heard, Spencer and Thomas pull up alongside Stafford. Thomas introduces himself and Victor points out that Stafford is very special. Stafford explains that he runs on batteries and not steam. Victor tries to tell Spencer to be careful that Stafford's batteries could run out, but Spencer insists that he knows all about batteries and does not listen to Victor's warning. Outside, Spencer thinks that everyone on the Island will think he is very grand for showing a new engine around. Stafford tries to remind Spencer about his batteries, but Spencer puffs grandly away to show Stafford off at the Sodor Search and Rescue Centre. On the way, Stafford tries to tell Spencer about his batteries again, but Spencer still does not listen. As they clatter under a bridge, Stafford's batteries run out and he rolls to a stop. Stafford tries to alert Spencer, but the pompous engine does not hear him.
At the Sodor Search and Rescue Centre, Spencer introduces Stafford to the rescue team. Flynn points out that there is no one there and Spencer thinks that Stafford must be lost and sets off straight away to find him. Spencer soon finds Stafford having his battery charged. Stafford tries to explain that his battery had run out, but Spencer is not interested and chuffs away to Misty Island with Stafford following behind. Misty Island is a long way away and soon Stafford's battery is running low. Stafford tries to inform Spencer, but Spencer is too busy whistling to the children to hear him. Then Stafford's battery runs out again and he rolls to a halt.
Soon Spencer steams into the Logging Station, unaware that Stafford is not with him. Spencer introduces the Logging Locos to Stafford, but the Logging Locos cannot see an engine with Spencer. Spencer thinks Stafford must be lost again and sets off to find him immediately. Spencer finds Stafford having his battery charged again. Stafford tries to explain once more, but Spencer is not interested and sets off to show Stafford to the Duke and Duchess of Boxford. Along the way, Stafford tries to tell Spencer that his battery is running out once more. Spencer assures Stafford that his battery is fine and carries on his way as Stafford slows to a stop.
At the Duke and Duchess' summer house, Spencer introduces Stafford to the Duke and Duchess, but Stafford is not there. The Duke wonders if Stafford's battery had ran out and Spencer admits that he thinks that is what happened with embarrassment. The Duke declares that they must find him at once and they board their private coach. Once again, Spencer finds Stafford having his battery charged. The Duke and Duchess are very impressed with Stafford. The Duke explains that they need to go and meet Sir Topham Hatt at Knapford, but Spencer cannot go anywhere; he has ran out of coal. Stafford is happy to help and he pushes Spencer to Knapford.
At Knapford, nobody takes any notice of Spencer as they are too busy admiring Stafford. The Fat Controller calls Stafford a Really Useful Engine and everyone cheers for the new arrival.
- Bash and Dash
- Sir Topham Hatt
- The Duke and Duchess of Boxford
- Ol' Wheezy (does not speak)
- Hee-Haw (does not speak)
- Percy (cameo)
- Toby (cameo)
- Annie and Clarabel (cameo)
- Henrietta (cameo)
- Rocky (cameo)
- Butch (cameo)
- Kevin (cameo)
- Harold (cameo)
- Captain (cameo)
- The Mayor of Sodor (cameo)
- The Tree Specialists (cameo)
- The Teacher (cameo)
- Two Schoolgirls (cameo)
- The Ginger-haired Boy (cameo)
- The Blond-haired Boy (cameo)
- One of Dowager Hatt's Friends (cameo)
- The Lady with the Big Hat (cameo)
- The Welsh Bird Watcher (cameo)
- The Great Railway Show Judge (cameo)
- Albert's Wife (cameo)
- The Female Puppet Show Entertainer (cameo)
- Island of Sodor
- Misty Island
- Ben Small as Thomas and Ferdinand
- Matt Wilkinson as Spencer, Bash, Victor and the Duke of Boxford
- Keith Wickham as Dash, Stafford and the Fat Controller
- Rupert Degas as Flynn
- Teresa Gallagher as the Duchess of Boxford
- Martin Sherman as Thomas
- Glenn Wrage as Spencer and Ferdinand
- William Hope as Bash and the Duke of Boxford
- Kerry Shale as Dash and Sir Topham Hatt
- Keith Wickham as Stafford
- Rupert Degas as Flynn
- David Bedella as Victor
- Jules de Jongh as the Duchess of Boxford
- The end credits add an exclamation mark to the episode's title.
- This was the last episode of several things:
- The last episode to feature Rupert Degas as part of the voice cast.
- The last episode to feature Rupert Degas voicing Flynn.
- The Duke of Boxford's last speaking role until the nineteenth series episode Two Wheels Good.
- The Mayor of Sodor's last appearance until the nineteenth series.
- The last appearance of a pump trolley until the twenty-second series episode Forever and Ever.
- Edited stock footage and animations from the thirteenth series episode Hiro Helps Out is used.
- This marks Stafford's only appearance in the Nitrogen Studios era.
- Spencer is actually too long to be turned around on the Steamworks turntable.
- When Spencer says "The Island awaits," he only mouths "awaits."
- Spencer refers to the Duke and Duchess of Boxford as "My Duke and Duchess," but the correct form of address he should use is "Your Graces."
In Other Languages
|Brazilian Portuguese||Bem Vindo, Stafford|
|French||L'arrivé de Stafford|
|Hungarian||Isten hozott, Stafford!|
|Romanian||Bine ai Venit, Stafford!|
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