The Duchess of Gloucester (commonly called "The Duchess") is a kind LMS Coronation Class locomotive who used to live at Euston.
During the second episode of Season 1; William was telling Jimmy he wasn't important enough to have a name as he is just a small shunter. The Duchess reversed into the shed and told William that Jimmy was important and then she told Jimmy he looks splendid Jimmy smiles and leaves
A few months later in "Old Rivals" when the engines are talking about the A4 Pacific from last nigh, Ken the standard 4 is talking to Jimmy and Fred and the Duchess steams in and tells the engines about her past in the 1930's. she along with the other Coronation classes were streamlined and they talked about how the other L.M.S. engines would be willing them along until the L.N.E.R. won with No. 4468 Mallard. The Duchess sadly told them about them about how they were re-streamlined after the war. However, she still manages to accept the eastern engines and when an A3 Pacific came later she befriended it along with the other engines. When William came back the Duchess and the other engines were surprised to hear the A3 was called The Flying Scotsman.
As spring came, in the episode "Every cloud has a silver lining" the Duchess was in bad shape. Her brakes would fail her and there was a strange sound whenever she picked up speed. Her blue livery was out of date and she hadn't been painted in Brunswick green the new livery for BR, which most engines had already been painted in. Den the new class 08 shunter would tease her. In addition, when she did her run to Crewe she failed to stop at the station and almost took her coaches past. The Shed Master decided that the Duchess would have an overhaul and the Duchess was very happy. However later that day, while Den was waiting to shunt a train, the Duchess's brakes were struggling to hold her and she rolled off out of control and bumped into Den until she came to a stop. The Shed Master said she would be allocated to Crewe and take express trains to Scotland. This meant she would not be living at Euston any more and all the engines especially Jimmy were dismayed. However the Duchess assured them every cloud has a silver lining and left for the final time.
A year later in the episode "Arthur & the Duchess" Arthur told the engines a story from the time when he was allocated to Crewe and he would often come to Euston and meet the Duchess. At that time he was known as "The Honorable Artillery Company". They became friends. However when he arrived at Euston one day the Shed Master sadly told him that his driver, who had been called Arthur had died in the war. At this news, THAC became angry and stayed at the sheds refusing to move until the Duchess told him that his driver and fireman had loved him and that he wouldn't approve of him sulking. THAC finally moved out of the sheds and soon the Duchess renamed him Arthur.
She was likely scrapped at Crewe when she was living there as The Unnamed Standerd 3 states to Horwich ''It's no longer the welcoming place where sick or damaged engines go for repairs it's a dark place now where older engines are sent to be cut up and scrapped they're lined up on sidings ready for there fate'' so that could have happend to the Duchess.
The Duchess is a mother figure to most of the smaller engines including Jimmy. She can see good in everyone including William. She is the kindest and sweetest locomotive to grace the rail. Her power isn't just to pull heavy trains its also to defend someone in need.
The Duchess is based on the real 46225 Duchess of Gloucester, built in May 1938 and withdrawn on October 1964. She did not survive into preservation but three of her classmates remain today.
When the series began The Duchess was painted in BR Express Passenger Blue. When she was reallocated to Crewe, The Duchess was confirmed to to have been repainted to BR Brunswick Green, though she has yet to be seen in the series in that livery.
- Jimmy and William (cameo)
- Old Rivals
- Every Cloud has a Silver Lining
- The Trouble with Australia (mentioned)
- Babs The Brave (mentioned)
- Arthur and the Duchess
- Coming soon