Christopher Awdry

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Christopher Awdry
Awdry in 2002
Born (1940-07-02) 2 July 1940 (age 76)
Devizes, Wiltshire, England
Occupation Author
Nationality English
Years active 1983–2011

Christopher Vere Awdry (born 2 July 1940)[1] is an English author known for his contributions to The Railway Series of books featuring Thomas the Tank Engine, which was started by his father, the Rev. W. Awdry (1911-1997). He has also produced children's books based on a number of other railways, as well as non-fiction articles and books on heritage railways. He was born at Devizes, the family moving to Kings Norton, Birmingham when he was aged 5 months. Awdry was educated at Worksop College, a public school in North Nottinghamshire.

Christopher Awdry and the Railway Series[edit]

Christopher Awdry is in many ways responsible for the creation of Thomas and his railway, which started as a story told to him by his father during a bout of measles in 1942. When his father retired in 1972, he wrote several Thomas books himself. The series came to be called Thomas & Friends after that.[2]

In 2006 the current publishers, Egmont Books, decided to reprint the entire series in their original form; the fourteen books by Christopher were re-released at the beginning of August 2007.

The new interest from the publishers has gone beyond merely re-releasing the existing books. Christopher Awdry has written a new book for the series, titled Thomas and Victoria, which focuses on stories relating to the railway preservation movement. This, the forty-first book in the series, was released on 3 September 2007. In April 2010, Egmont Books confirmed that another Railway Series book, no 42 in the series, would be published in 2011.[3] The publication date was later confirmed as 4 July 2011, and the illustrator as Clive Spong.[4] It was published under the title Thomas and His Friends.

Other works[edit]

In 2001 Christopher Awdry wrote six stories featured in two books concerning railway safety, which were distributed to every primary school and library in the country. They were called: Bad Days for Thomas and His Friends / More Bad Days for Thomas and His Friends. The train operator Virgin Trains produced a colouring book for young passengers based on the stories.

A series of six books has been produced featuring locomotives from the Eastbourne Miniature Steam Railway, and illustrated by Marc Vyvyan-Jones.


Railway Series volumes[edit]

For books 1–26 in the series, written by the Rev. W. Awdry, see List of Railway Series Books.

Other 'Thomas' Books[edit]

Thomas Easy-to-Read Books[edit]

Published by Dean (Reed Children's Books), 1990–1997, illustrated by Ken Stott.
(Also published as Egmont 'mini books' (1997–1998))

  • Thomas and the Tiger
  • James and the Balloons
  • Percy and the Kite
  • Thomas and the Birthday Party
  • Henry and the Ghost Train
  • Thomas and the Dinosaurs
  • Thomas and the Pony Show *
  • Thomas goes to School *
  • Henry Goes to the Hospital *
  • Thomas the Tank Engine Easy-To-Read Treasury (1997) – incorporating the 3 titles marked * in a combined volume.

Eastbourne Series[edit]

  • 01. General Takes Charge
  • 02. Rachel and the Goose
  • 03. Western and the Lost Ring
  • 04. Oily Keeps Things Going
  • 05. Eastbourne's Wedding Special
  • 06. Oily and the Flood

Other railway stories[edit]

  • Railway for Sale
  • Luke Goes Flying – illustrated by Jonathan Clay[5]
  • LOTI and the Enchanted Forest
  • LOTI and the Lost Locket
  • The Chips Express
  • Heave-Ho Hamish
  • Hugh Goes Sliding



  1. ^ Sibley, Brian. The Thomas the Tank Engine Man. p. 90. 
  2. ^ "Christopher Awdry: why sour Lefties are wrong about Thomas the Tank Engine". Telegraph. 2015-05-13. Retrieved 2015-08-01. 
  3. ^ "The Railway Series 42 Due for Release in April 2011". (Thomas news). Sodor Island. 8 April 2010. Retrieved 17 May 2010. 
  4. ^ "Railway Series 42 Due July 2011". (Thomas news). Sodor Island. 15 November 2010. Retrieved 23 February 2011. 
  5. ^ Book launch at Exbury Gardens – accessed: 1 June 2007

External links[edit]