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"My hat is ruined!"
"So is mine.
— Lady Hatt and the Fat Controller

The Grand Opening is the twenty-first episode of the seventh season.


The engine are working on maintenance for a new station and Sir Topham Hatt announces that he will arrive on Harold with Lady Hatt for the grand opening. Skarloey is often late doing maintenance work and the Fat Controller is cross and worried that he may be late for the grand opening of Rumblin Bridge station.

After Thomas took them to Dryaw Airfield, Harold was having engine trouble and Lady Hatt was upset, but Sir Topham Hatt got an idea to ride on the hot air balloon and we're on their way.

Skarloey was upset when he was waiting for workmen to load branches on his truck and gets impatient. Sir Topham Hatt sees this and worries, even the other engines at the opening. Skarloey was finally on his way.

Meanwhile, the balloon's burner runs out of fuel and Lady Hatt panics saying she wants to get out, but Sir Topham Hatt knows they can't. Skarloey sees the balloon and falls on a tree next to Skarloey, and sees Sir Topham Hatt. Lady and Sir Topham Hatt's Hat were ruined, but Sir Topham Hatt was delighted to see Skarloey. The driver offers them a ride and Skarloey took them to the grand opening just in time.




  • Going by production order, this is the twenty-fourth episode of the seventh season.
  • Stock footage from Something Fishy is used.
  • The Fat Controller's ruined hat would be later used in Peter Kay's "The Official BBC Children in Need Medley" in 2009.
  • The Fat Controller is called "Sir Topham Hatt" when the balloon is about to fall down onto the tree in the UK version.


  • When Skarloey puffs into the station at the beginning, the puffing sound does not match the speed at which he is travelling.
  • When the Fat Controller says "The wind direction is perfect," his arm slowly slides downward.
  • When Skarloey approaches a level crossing, a man can be seen on the far left as a blue tractor passes over the crossing.
  • Skarloey's brake van is referred to as a box car.
  • The Skarloey Railway is incorrectly referred to as the Mountain Railway.
  • A steam platform is visible when Skarloey arrives at Rumblin Bridge.
  • In a close-up shot of Skarloey's driver, Skarloey has a gold ring around his front window. In non close-up shots, the frame is not there and the window also appears to be much smaller.


  • Lady Hatt (as the balloon starts to fall): I want to get off!
  • The Fat Controller: Not now, dear.

In Other Languages

Language Name Meaning
Japanese ききゅうとかいつうしき The Balloon and the Opening Ceremony
Danish Åbningsceremonien The Opening Ceremony
Swedish Den stora invigningen The Grand Opening
Italian La Grande Inaugurazione The Grand Opening
Hungarian Az ünnepélyes megnyitó The Opening Ceremony
Chinese 开幕 The Opening
Korean 사장님을 구한 스칼로이 Skarloey Saves the President
Romanian Marea Deschidere The Grand Opening
Slovak Veľké otvorenie The Big Opening
Russian Торжественное открытие Grand Opening
Polish Uroczyste Otwarcie Opening Ceremony
Thai พิธีเปิดเส้นทางใหม่ Opening New Routes