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Thomas & Friends character
Rheneas 1995.jpg
First appearanceFour Little Engines (1955)
Created byRev. W. Awdry
Voiced byUK/US:
Ben Small (2012–2015)
John Hasler (2016–present)

Rheneas is a fictional narrow gauge tank locomotive from The Railway Series by the Reverend W. Awdry and its television adaptation Thomas & Friends. He is one of the oldest engines on the Island of Sodor. Rheneas lives and works on the Skarloey Railway as Engine No.2, and is known as the "Gallant Old Engine" because he saved the railway from closure. He is Skarloey's brother.

Railway Series history[edit]

He arrived shortly after his brother Skarloey, and was the more sensible of the two engines. He was a hard worker right from the start, and when Skarloey became too ill to work, he took charge of the line on his own. It was at this time that he saved the railway when he took a train full of passengers home despite being badly hurt. When Sir Handel and Peter Sam arrived, the Thin Controller was able to send him away for repairs. He returned better than ever, and these days he mainly pulls passenger trains. In 1965, he celebrated his hundredth birthday with Skarloey, both of whom are the age of 153.

Rheneas in the TV series[edit]

Rheneas was introduced in Season 4 of Thomas the Tank Engine and Friends. He is a minor character, and he only spoke in one episode of the 1995 series. He played small roles in Seasons 5 and 6, and had two major roles in Season 7.

When Rheneas returned to the series in 2005 after an absence in Season 8, he was depicted with a more childlike attitude. His first major role of the new series, Rheneas and the Dinosaur featured him and Skarloey having a dispute when Rheneas gets to pull a dinosaur skeleton, but can't manage on his own. It should also be noted that Skarloey and Rheneas have never been referred to as brothers in the TV adaptation, being called "friends" in the more recent episodes.

After the events of Blue Mountain Mystery he was temporarily painted yellow as a surprise for Thomas who had been looking for a "yellow engine". In subsequent appearances, he returned to his orange-red color.

In the latest Season 17 episodes, Luke's New Friend and The Switch, he has shown a dislike to deer, due to "the quarry is not a place for animals" and he subestimated Millie's capability, due to him thinking she is used to do small jobs, but he was then proved wrong by the latter.

In the Japanese version of Seasons 4-7, Rheneas was voiced by Ryōtarō Okiayu. His new voice actor in Season 9 is Daiki Nakamura.

Rheneas appeared in the specials The Great Discovery, Blue Mountain Mystery, King of the Railway, The Great Race, and Journey Beyond Sodor.

Voice actors[edit]

From Spring 2012 to 2015, Rheneas was voiced by Ben Small (UK/US) (who also voiced Thomas and Toby) in the CGI version of the series on both sides of the Atlantic, respectively. From 2016 onwards he is voiced by John Hasler (who also voices Thomas in the UK).


Commercial models of Rheneas character
Model range Type Color
Ertl die-cast metal Normal and Metallic
Take Along/Take n Play die-cast metal Normal
Thomas & Friends Wooden Railway wood Normal
TrackMaster plastic motorized Normal & "Greatest Moments"
Bachmann HO gauge plastic model Normal


Dolgoch, basis for Rheneas

Rheneas is based on the 1866-built locomotive Dolgoch who works at the Talyllyn Railway in Wales.