|Voices of||Charlie George
|Narrated by||Sacha Dhawan|
|Theme music composer||Chris McHale|
|Country of origin||United Kingdom|
|No. of series||4|
|No. of episodes||104 x 10 min (As of July 2011)
52 x 4 min (List of episodes)
|Running time||10 min / 4 min|
|Production company(s)||Ludorum plc|
|Original channel||BBC Two|
|Picture format||16:9 (HDTV/SDTV unknown)|
|Original run||22 September 2008– present|
|Related shows||Chuggington: Badge Quest|
Chuggington is a British computer-animated television series for children produced by, Ludorum plc. It is broadcast on the BBC children's channel CBeebies, Cartoonito, Boomerang, Milkshake! on Channel 5, Nick Jr. (UK & Ireland) and CiTV in the UK and Disney Junior in the US and other 175 territories throughout the world.
The series is set in the fictional town of Chuggington, and follows the adventures of 6 young novice railway anthropomorphic locomotives, (or "Trainees",) named Wilson, Brewster, Koko, Hoot, Toot and Piper. Throughout each episode the Trainees learn the value of loyal friendship, telling the truth, listening carefully, persisting under adversity, completing tasks, resolving conflict without violence, and many similar important life values. In the show, the locomotives, called "Chuggers", are all intelligent, empathetic, independent and self-directed, with mobile facial features. None of the Chuggers are ever seen to have a crew, although there are several human characters that the Chuggers interact with regularly, and many of the chuggers have crew doors which the chuggers can open and close on their own. Each chugger tends to talk in ways that emphasize their distinct personalities.
The town of Chuggington has a central area of large modern buildings; some of the scenes go out into countryside which includes a farm, a safari park and a quarry. A 'Chugston Hotel' has been mentioned. There are 4 railway tunnel openings side by side, coloured red, blue, yellow, green from left to right, under the town centre which can be used by all trains. "Old Chuggington", an abandoned old town overgrown with wild vegetation, is sometimes mentioned and visited. The backgrounds and scenery are all computer-generated, and there are turning-camera and moving-camera shots.
The core creative team behind Chuggington consists of Sarah Ball, a producer/director who had worked on Bob the Builder, the creator of Tayo the Little Bus and Don Toht who designed the characters and sets.
As well as the regular 10 minute episodes, Chuggington: Badge Quest, a collection of 4 minute shorter shows, has been produced. These focus on the "Trainees" efforts to earn various reward badges as part of their "Chugger" training.
Three Chuggington specials have been commissioned for release on DVD from 2013 onwards.
The first series of 52 episodes was sold to broadcasters including the BBC, ABC (Australia), TF1 (France) and Super RTL (Germany) in a deal announced in February 2008. A second series of 26 episodes was purchased by the BBC and many other broadcasters throughout the world. Aimed at children between the ages of 3 and 6, Chuggington made its UK debut as a "soft launch" on BBC Two on 22 September 2008.
|United Kingdom||BBC Two
|Australia||ABC 4 Kids|
|United Arab Emirates||E-Junior|
|New Zealand||TV2 (New Zealand)|
GMA (in late December 2013)
|United States||Playhouse Disney
January 18, 2010-February 13, 2011
February 14, 2011 – present
Brewster, Koko, Wilson, Hoot and Toot, and Piper are the “Trainees” and main characters in Chuggington. With the help of experienced “Chuggers”, the Trainees learn to ride the rails by completing daily tasks and badge quests.
- Wilson (voiced by Morgan Overton in U.K. Series 1 and 2 and Tony Terraciano in U.S. Series 1 and 2) is a lively red engine based upon an EMD F-unit. His enthusiasm is opposed by his short attention span, and most of his adventures revolve around this.
- Brewster (voiced by Charlie George in U.K. Series 1 and 2 and Miles J Harvey in U.S. Series 1 and 2) is a strong diesel-electric locomotive built for heavy loads. He is British Rail blue with yellow face; Brewster is similar to a BR Deltic diesel engine, but with a single end-cab. He likes to haul heavy loads on pick-ups, and often picks up too much load. Other Chuggers may rush when given a task, but Brewster asks questions if he is unsure. He is dependable, respectful and can be relied on when there is trouble.
- Koko (voiced by Imogen Bailey in the U.K Series 1 and 2, and Brigid Harrington in the U.S. Series 1 and 2), is an electric engine, modelled on the bullet train. She is green and purple, and was built for high speed. She loves to explore and have adventures, and to challenge her friends to a dare or a race. Although she can get into mischief, she always means well and knows when to apologise.
- Hoot and Toot are twins. They are nearly always seen joined back-to-back, but in at least two episodes by strong pulling they manage to separate. Toot is green, female and has blue eyes; Hoot is blue, male and has green eyes – he is also red-green colourblind.
- Piper is a small oil-fired steam locomotive. In her first episode, Old Puffer Pete says that she runs on vegetable oil. In another episode we find out that Piper can be mischievous.
Other train characters
- Action Chugger is the movie star chugger. He responds to emergencies after being informed that he is needed by a flashing red light on his nose. He can unfold parts of his sides into short wings, each with a jet motor under it, and fly. After flying, he always lands on a railway track. Action Chugger's flight range extends at least as far as low Earth orbit. He normally resides in Chuggington.
- Calley is the small shunting engine who is normally seen shunting rolling stock. She is Dunbar's assistant and helps in training the Trainees. She is also the 'Emergency Chugger' who is sent to rescue stranded chuggers, and is fitted with a siren and flashing light; she also has a range of emergency rolling stock that she can use to get the other Chuggers out of trouble – such as a fuel car, firefighting car, and crane car.
- Chatsworth is an older well-spoken train who generally performs the same tasks as Harrison. He is based on a Baldwin Sharknose locomotive.
- Decka is a double-decker tram built for heavy loads and passengers. She is brightly coloured and she has a big personality.
- Dunbar is the large shunting engine. He is largely responsible for the training of the trainee Chuggers. He is in a dark green livery, and is based on GM Electro-Motive diesel locomotives like the EMD GP38-2. He leaves Chuggington during Series 3, and is replaced by Skylar as the trainer.
- Emery is the Rapid Transit train often seen on elevated lines or in underground tunnels. He is based on the Urban Transportation Development Corporation Intermediate Capacity Transit System Scarborough RT-type electric train. He likes tricking and harassing other trains into thinking that they have a problem. He is the only engine who carries an additional carriage or truck with him permanently, although in at least two episodes, he disconnects his carriage to go faster. He often announces his actions with transit announcements. His right eye is green and his left eye is blue.
- Fletch is a new character to be introduced in Series 4. He is a member of the Chuggineers.
- Frostini is the Italian ice cream train resembling the Pioneer Zephyr, popular with the children of Chuggington and seen by the trainees as very cool. He is normally seen handing out ice-creams or at the factory working on a creation. He is quite proud of his accomplishments and speaks English with an Italian accent.
- Hanzo is the fastest chugger in Chuggington. Mentor to Koko, Hanzo is sleek, streamlined, and has a photographic memory. He believes there is no greater honour than transporting passengers quickly, but always safely, to their destination. Respectful, dedicated, and precise, Hanzo enourages fellow Speed Fleet chuggers to be the best they can through rigorous practice. He is always extremely punctual.
- Harrison is a large blue engine resembling a Union Pacific Railroad M-10003 series diesel, and along with Koko, is considered one of the fastest engines in Chuggington.
- Hodge (built from a hodge-podge of parts) is a six-wheeled Dandy Diesel, who normally works with Eddie the handyman. He is a bit like a pick-up truck, and often is tasked with taking the rubbish to the recycling yard. With his "seen it all" attitude, it takes a lot to get Hodge excited.
- Irving is a small red engine who handles the rubbish and recycling chores around the depot; he is proud to boast that nothing is thrown away in Chuggington.
- Jackman joins Chuggington in Series 4 as the chief of Chug Patrol and the bravest chugger on the tracks. With a twinkle in his eye and strong leadership skills, Jackman makes the perfect mentor for Wilson, who aspires to follow in his tracks.
- M'tambo is the safari park ranger and garbage-handling engine, and works around the safari park, giving tours to visitors and handling the rubbish and recycling. He speaks with an African (possibly Kenyan) accent.
- Old Puffer Pete is the oldest chugger in Chuggington, a steam locomotive who is apparently 150 years old. Pete loves passing his wisdom on to the trainees or anyone who is willing to listen. He drives them mad with his endless stories (which often get him confused), and can never seem to remember the chuggers' names, but they are very fond of him. He is a cross between Union Pacific No. 119 and a DRG Class 62.
- Olwin is an older motherly steam locomotive resembling the British streamlined train LNER Class A4, who refers to the "trainees" as her "little chugg-a-chuggs". Olwin's coal is stored just forward of the cab making her a tank locomotive, instead of a tender.
- Skylar is a large crane locomotive who has just completed training. His crane ends in a 2-fingered grab. He can use his crane and his side prop legs to flip himself end-for-end or onto an adjacent track. He bears a close resemblance to a GG20B Green Goat locomotive modified with a crane end.
- Speedy McAllister is a large fast steam locomotive in that appears based on the CNW Class E-4 locomotives minus the tender. Speedy is somewhat gruff and blunt in character but means well and is helpful to experienced chuggers and trainees alike. He prefers more industrial jobs as opposed to those with a high degree of customer relations. Speedy's whistle is the deepest and loudest of the three steam locomotives in Chuggington. Speedy's voice in the U.K. is a Yorkshire accent but in the U.S. it is Western.
- Tyne is a new character to be introduced in Series 4. She is a member of the Chuggineers.
- Zack joins Chuggington to head up the Chuggineers. This foreman is organised, hard-working, and extremely safety conscious, making him the perfect leader of the Chuggineer crew and mentor to Brewster. Joined by his fellow team members Tyne and Fletch, this engineering team is responsible for all the heavy lifting, loading, and building of bridges, tunnels, and stations, as well as laying track and making repairs.
- Zephie is a young direct drive system trolley car equipped with a scissor-lift trolley so she can lift and rotate her cab, which allows Eddie to work on things not normally accessible. She is particularly flighty and giggly.
- Denzel is Mayor Pullman's nephew.
- Dr. Gosling is the safari park vet.
- Dr. Ling is the resident scientist and researcher in Chuggington. She often develops various inventions for the chuggers to test out.
- Eddie is the depot handyman who turns his hand to all manner of tasks, including track maintenance and fixing signals and points. He currently lives in a caboose, similar in appearance to Morgan's house, close to Chuggington. He used to live with his parents some distance away, and was frequently late to work, but the trainees found an abandoned caboose and Morgan fixed it so Eddie could live in it.
- Felix the farmer.
- Howie is the control person (like Vee) at a big station where chuggers (mainly Brewster, Koko & Wilson) get refuelled/cleaned/get their jobs for the day.
- Jenny is a young girl who's the rightful owner of Zip, a puppy that Koko finds and wants to keep. Jenny is happy when Koko brings Zip back to her, and says that Koko can visit him any time she wants.
- Karen who works at the quarry.
- King of Buffertonia who sometimes visits Chuggington. He has been taken on tours by M'tambo, Old Puffer Pete, and Harrison.
- Linda works at the printers. In one episode, she's awaiting Wilson's delivery of special paper, and in another, she commissions Wilson to take various pictures for a poster about Chuggington.
- Lori is Morgan's assistant at the Repair Shed, and was also tasked with cleaning engines before the arrival of the chugwash. She is apprenticed to Morgan, and attends college.
- Magnificent Mysterioso is a magician who's performed different tricks in some episodes.
- Mayor Pullman is the mayor of Chuggington.
- Morgan is the Senior Mechanic at the depot, in charge of the Repair Shed. He lives in a house that looks like a caboose in Chuggington yard.
- Mr. Knot is Mayor Pullman's assistant.
- Mr. Simkins is an inspector from the "Ministry of Chuggers". He's a very serious person and gets startled whenever he hears a train horn or whistle. He comes to Chuggington to test Wilson, Koko, and Brewster on their passenger carrying abilities in one episode.
- Nurse David is a nurse from Chuggington Hospital. He once talked to the trainees about what ambulance chuggers and nurses do.
- Rag Barnstable is a reporter for the Chuggington Gazette.
- Snap is a photographer for the Chuggington Gazette. He works with Rag.
- Vicky is a safari park ranger, and looks after the animals.
- Vee is the depot announcer and dispatcher, with speakers all over Chuggington, in the depot and in remote areas. She keeps everything running on time and to schedule. After giving the chuggers their tasks, her dispatch board shows the destination, and shows which coloured tunnel to take when leaving the depot. She can be stern with disobedient Chuggers. Vee has never been seen as anything other than her public address system. She may be a human, or a self-intelligent system similar to the chuggers.
- Banana, a naughty monkey at the safari park. Once he stole mailbags from Brewster.
- Dragon, a small frog with a three note croak and one of the safari park's newest additions. Brewster was initially scared of him, having heard his croak echoing in a tunnel and thinking he was a dragon.
- Ebo, an elephant at the safari park. He is often mischievous, but is a good friend to the trainees.
- Peckum, a dog at the repair shed. He belongs to Morgan.
- Twiga, a giraffe at the safari park. In one episode, Koko must keep watch as Twiga is preparing to give birth. ("Twiga" is the Swahili word for "giraffe".)
- Zip, a small dog that Koko finds and wants to keep. She names him Zoomie, though later finds out that his name is Zip upon returning him to his rightful owner.
In January 2009 it was announced that RC2 would be producing Chuggington toys under their Learning Curve brand; the toys were released to the market in 2010. RC2 contributed to half of the series' production budget in exchange for long-term global toy licensing rights.
DVDs from Anchor Bay Entertainment include the first, entitled Chuggington: Let's Ride the Rails was released in March 2009 containing six episodes. A second DVD, Action Stations, released in October 2009, contained another six. The third DVD release, Wheels to the Rails, with another six episodes, is due out in late November. Anchor Bay’s Chuggington: Let’s Ride the Rails was the first Chuggington DVD to be released nationwide in the United States on February 8, 2010.
In the UK, several children's books are in the works, including Koko on Call: A Nightlight Adventure, based on an early episode. Publications International and Scholastic introduced Chuggington books to the U.S. market in late 2010 and early 2011, respectively.
In early 2010, the Chuggington Diecast Series of model trains was released in the UK. The Chuggington Diecast Series by Learning Curve was released in the U.S. nationwide in late 2010.
Later in 2010, the interactive range was released in the UK. The chuggers and Vee, their dispatcher, can interact with each other using 'Smart Talk' technology and over 300 stored phrases. Each chugger can recognize the other chuggers, and their train stops. The interactive phrases spoken depend on which chuggers and locations are placed together, giving a far more varied, but not random, conversation. The Chuggington Interactive Railway was released in the United States in February 2011.
The Chuggington Wooden Railway was released in September 2010 to Canada, and on 1 March 2011 to specialty retailers in the United States. It is compatible with all other wooden railway systems.
Chuggington announced that in late 2011, there will be a Construction Chuggington range.
In the United States other Chuggington products currently available include games (I Can Do That! Games), puzzles (Cardinal), and activity sets (Crayola).
In 2012, it has been announced that a Plarail range featuring Chuggington is being made.
In 2013 Bachmann Trains made a series of Chuggington electric train sets and separate sale engines and cars. It is compatible with all other HO scale systems by other companies and is made to work with the Thomas & Friends range
- PRE-SCHOOL MONTH: New characters bolster Chuggington | Licensing Industry | News by. Licensing.biz. Retrieved on 2012-01-09.
- Castleman, Lana: Q&A: Caminada charts startup's next moves, Kidscreen, March 27, 2009.
- Bennett, Samuel: The Virtual World of Chuggington: A First Time Director's Post-Mortem, LOGIN Conference, May 13, 2009.
- CBeebies Programmes – Chuggington: Badge Quest. BBC. Retrieved on 2012-01-09.
- Broadcast Now, BBC gets on board Chuggington, 6 February 2008,
- "Chuggington- Wilson's Smooth Moves". BBFC.
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- Chuggington episode Hoot v. Toot
- "Information for Grownups". CBeebies. p. 3. Retrieved 23 Jan 2009.
- "Information for Grownups". CBeebies. p. 4. Retrieved 23 Jan 2009.
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- Chuggington – Let's Ride the Rails (DVD). amazon.co.uk. Retrieved on 2012-01-09.
- Official Site
- Chuggington at the Internet Movie Database
- Chuggington at CBeebies
- Ludorum plc (production company)
- BBC iPlayer Chuggington Episodes