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"I know all about Bill and Ben and their tricks, Timothy."
— Thomas, Tale of the Brave
BillCGIpromo2BenCGIpromo2
Bill and Ben
  • Numbers: SCC 1 and SCC 2 respectively
  • Class: Bagnall 0-4-0STs
  • Designer: W.F. Bagnall
  • Builder: W.F. Bagnall
  • Configuration: 0-4-0ST
  • Built: 1948
  • Arrived on Sodor: Sometime between 1949-1964

Bill and Ben are tank engine twins who work for the Sodor China Clay Company, though they can commonly be found at Brendam Docks. They formerly worked at Anopha Quarry. They enjoy playing tricks and being cheeky to other engines.

Bio

In the twelfth season, Gordon accidently crashed into Ben's flatbeds of logs when he was trying to find a shortcut. Gordon asked Ben for help and he agreed. 

In the seventeenth season, they teased Percy after he had an accident with a mail bag, unaware the pumpkins on their train were falling onto the tracks, which caused more problems for Percy. After Sir Topham Hatt ordered one twin to act as a back engine, Bill reluctantly went to push from behind. Ben ended up derailing near an embankment, and Percy, although he was nervous because he had lost his new lucky charm, helped Bill pull Ben back onto the tracks.

After racing Connor several times (by racing, one would start the race and the other twin would be waiting at the finish) Sir Topham Hatt figured out their tricks. So people would not confuse the two or think they were the same engine, Bill was repainted blue. To continue the tricks, Ben tricked Kevin into giving him a blue coat of paint too. Since then they were repainted to their yellow schemes. They also teased Harvey about going fishing with his hook.

Thomas was sent to work with the twins at the Clay Pits while a bridge on his branch line was being repaired. They ran away from him, and after he caught up, they teased him about being slow. They showed him to a line of trucks, which he was coupled up to. Thomas began pulling them, but did not realise that Timothy was on the other end, jerking the little oil-burning engine backwards. Later that day, there was a storm at the Pits, and the rain made the cliffs unstable. Thomas was near some cliffs, and saw a set of mysterious footprints. However, the area was still unstable and he was unable to investigate. Bill and Ben pushed Thomas to safety just before the three were hit by a landslide. The next morning, the twins were congratulated by the Fat Controller. Later in the week, when Thomas asked if they were playing a trick on him by scaring him with fake footprints, Bill and Ben, offended, puffed away. The next morning at dawn, when Percy went to the clay pits to prove his bravery to James, Bill accused Ben of making puffing noises in his sleep, and when Thomas came looking for Percy, the twins assumed that they could literally hear what Timothy was dreaming. When they went to work for the day, they were almost hit by a landslide, and after Marion found a fossil, Bill and Ben were both very intrigued by the concept of fossils.

In the eighteenth season, Bill and Ben played Guess What's In My Shovel with Marion. They also teased Timothy for being an oil burning engine, but when the Clay Pits ran out of coal, Timothy went to pick up some more. They apologised for their teasing. However, they later sent Timothy on what the Fat Controller referred to as a "fool's errand" to search for a rainbow-coloured truck. Timothy brought back a green truck with several colours of paint on it full of dockyard waste. Bill and Ben were sent to take it to Whiff's Waste Dump as a punishment, as well as being on waste duty. They also teased Emily, Samson and Henry.

In the nineteenth season, the twins became convinced that Timothy was no help at all. So when they found out that the Fat Controller was looking for an engine to help at Brendam Docks, they volunteered Timothy. Unfortunately, the twins were too busy messing around to work on their own properly. Luckily, once Timothy was no longer required at the docks, he came back to the Clay Pits to help them clear up the mess.

Persona

Bill and Ben are Sodor's mischievous saddle tank engine twins, who have great fun in teasing the other engines of the railway. Each has four wheels, a tiny chimney and dome, and a small squat cab. They often work in the China Clay pits and quarries. Their loads of clay can be used for many things such as paper, paint, and pottery. They take trucks for engines on the main line and ships in the harbour and are regularly seen around Brendam Docks. They enjoy attention and love taking visitors and being photographed. They tend to work together, like most twins, but even this youthful pair can have their arguments among themselves and can squabble with one another. They are highly prone to playing tricks and being cheeky. They have even teased Gordon on more than one occasion. Duck has called them "the bees" before, for being terrors when they start buzzing around. Edward and BoCo are the only engines who can really keep them in order enough to put a stop to their games and make them scamper along and behave. There is no real harm to them, but even Edward admits that they are maddening at times.

Basis

Bill and Ben are based on the Bagnall 0-4-0STs "Alfred" and "Judy" of Par, Cornwall, who are both preserved and in working order at the Bodmin and Wenford Railway.

According to the foreword of Thomas and the Twins, Alfred and Judy are both Bill and Ben's twins.

Livery

In the Railway Series, Bill and Ben are painted dark orange with red lining. In the television series, they are painted yellow with red lining.

Bill and Ben both have brown nameplates with yellow writing, "SCC" written on both sides in yellow and "Brendam Bay" on the front of their saddle tanks. In the Railway Series, they have number plates reading 1 and 2 respectively above both the back of their cabs and their faces.

From the seventeenth season onwards, the twins have had red wheels instead of black ones. In the episode from the same season, Bill or Ben?, the twins were painted dark blue with blue wheels, yellow lining and yellow lettering, but they returned to their normal livery soon afterwards.

Appearances

Television Series

Voice Actors

Bill:

  • Jonathan Broadbent (UK/US; seventeenth season onwards)
  • Sascha Draeger (Germany; Tale of the Brave onwards)
  • Marek Bocianiak (Poland)
  • Christian Greger Strøm (Norway; seventeenth season only)
  • Scott Maurstad (Norway; Tale of the Brave only)
  • Reinder van der Naalt (The Netherlands)
  • Alan Bravo (Latin America, seventeenth season onwards)
  • Silas Borges (Brazil; seventeenth season onwards)
  • Salvador Serrano Jr. (Spain; seventeenth season onwards)
  • Anton Savenkov (Russia; Emily Saves the World onwards)

Ben:

  • Jonathan Broadbent (UK/US; seventeenth season onwards)
  • Sascha Draeger (Germany; Tale of the Brave onwards)
  • Wojciech Chorąży (Poland)
  • Anders Sundstedt (Norway; seventeenth season only)
  • Scott Maurstad (Norway; Tale of the Brave only)
  • Reinder van der Naalt (The Netherlands)
  • Benjamín Rivera (Latin America; seventeenth season only)
  • Miguel Ángel Leal (Latin America; Tale of the Brave onwards)
  • Silas Borges (Brazil; seventeenth season onwards)
  • Miguel Ángel Poison (Spain; seventeenth season onwards)
  • Anton Savenkov (Russia; Emily Saves the World only)

Trivia

  • A behind the scenes picture of Bill's model reveals that he and Ben were to have numbers on their smokeboxes above their faces, as they did in the Railway Series.
  • Bill and Ben's television series models are currently on display at the Hara Model Railway Museum in Japan.
  • In the television series, Bill and Ben are twice the size of their basis'; Alfred and Judy. This was so their eye moving equipment and motors could be accommodated. When they returned in CGI, they were rendered in the same larger size.
  • Ben's whistle sound is Thomas' in a higher pitch, and Bill's is the same in an even higher pitch.
  • Nathan Clarke did an audio sample of Bill and Ben on his DAA Management Page
  • In an interview with SiF , Andrew Brenner stated that Bill and Ben were two of his favourite characters, along with James and Toby.
  • Bill and Ben have had many modificiations throughout the series. These include:
    • Season 17:
      • Permanent lamps and taillamps
        • An extra wood panel was added to the rear window to accommodate the taillamp
      • Taller cabs
      • Brass nameplates
      • Red lining behind the "SCC" lettering on their boilers
      • Red wheels
      • External brake shoes
      • Black domes and crossheads
      • Brake pipes
      • Yellow wheel lubricators on both sides, that connected to their valve gears
      • Additional sandboxes upon which their lamps are mounted
      • Yellow siderod guards
      • Red lining in the crevices of their wood panelling
      • Their faces became smaller, and were raised slightly higher up.
    • Season 19:
      • Their crossheads became grey again.
      • The text on their nameplates became gold.

Merchandise

  • ERTL (normal and Gold Rail; discontinued)
  • Wooden Railway (two versions; discontinued, reintroduced 2014)
  • Take Along (discontinued)
  • Take-n-Play
  • My First Thomas
  • Motor Road and Rail (discontinued)
  • TrackMaster (discontinued)
  • Hornby (discontinued)
  • My Thomas Story Library (discontinued)
  • Collectible Railway
  • Trading Cards (discontinued)
  • Bandai (several versions; discontinued)
  • Boss (Japan onlydiscontinued)
  • Tomica
  • Bachmann
  • De Agostini (discontinued)
  • Wind-up
  • Pocket Fantasy (discontinued)
  • Nakayoshi
  • Thomas Engine Collection Series (discontinued)
  • Mini Die Cast Collection (discontinued)
  • Departing Now (discontinued)
  • Thomas Town (discontinued)
  • Capsule Collection
  • Boss (discontinued)
  • Minis (classic (Both), racers (Bill), sports (Bill), dino, and advent calendar (Ben))
  • Choro-Q (Bill only)

Gallery

North Western Railway
ThomasEdwardHenryGordonJamesPercyTobyDuckDonald and DouglasOliverDaisy
Bill and BenHarveyEmilyArthurMurdochNevilleRosieWhiffStanleyHankFloraVictorCharlieBash and DashFerdinandScruffBellePorterTimothyMarionGlynnRyanSkiffDieselMavisDiesel 10'Arry and BertSaltyDenDartSidneyPaxtonNormanPhilipFlynnWinstonStafford
Sodor China Clay Company
Bill and BenTimothyMarion

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