Sir Charles Topham Hatt (1914-1997) was the second Controller of the North Western Railway, succeeding his father, Sir Topham Hatt. He was succeeded by his son, Stephen, after he retired in 1984.


The Railway Series

Charles Topham Hatt was born in 1914 to Sir Topham Hatt and Lady Jane. He was educated at Abbey School, and went to Crewe as an Engineering Pupil under W.A. Stanier. He was present when Henry was sent to Crewe in 1935 for an overhaul.

In 1937, William Stanier recommended Charles for railway service overseas, but he returned in 1939 to enlist in the Royal Engineers, and served with them throughout World War II. He married Amanda Croarie in 1940, and had two children with her: Stephen Topham in 1941, and Bridget Amanda in 1943.

Charles Hatt returned to Sodor in 1952 after spending some time overseas, and became Chief Mechanical Engineer at Crovan's Gate Works and general assistant to his father, who retired in 1954. After his father retired from the North Western Railway, Charles succeeded him as Controller of the Railway. Charles inherited the baronetcy in 1956 after his father passed away.

Sir Charles Topham Hatt began the plans to improve Knapford Harbour in 1955, which had originally been planned by his father. In 1965/66, he reopened the Arlesburgh Branch Line, and was responsible for building the Arlesdale Railway to bring ballast from the hills down to the North Western Railway.

In 1984, Sir Charles Topham Hatt stepped down from his position as Controller, and was replaced by his son, Stephen. He passed away in 1997. (Book; The Island of Sodor: Its People, History and Railways)

Thomas & Friends

Sir Charles Topham Hatt never succeeded his father as Controller of the North Western Railway, and has never appeared in an episode of the television series, but his children, Stephen and Bridget, have made numerous appearances. The Official Website's description of Sir Topham Hatt indirectly mentions Charles, stating that "we have yet to see his (Sir Topham Hatt's) children".

Personality and Traits

Like his father before him, Sir Charles Topham Hatt is a strict but friendly man, and looks out for all his engines and railway staff like his family. However, he sometimes rebukes the engines for situations beyond their own control.

Physical Appearance

Sir Charles Topham Hatt is portrayed as a short, stout gentleman with thinning grey hair. His regular attire consists of a purple waistcoat over a white shirt, a black jacket and tie, grey trousers, black dress shoes and a top hat. In Enterprising Engines, he wore a rose on the front of his jacket.

In Really Useful Engines, Sir Charles had black hair, a handlebar moustache and a brown waistcoat. This was the only time he was seen with these features.


The Railway Series


  • Charles is the first of the Fat Controllers to sport facial hair; he bore a moustache in Really Useful Engines.


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