• Bulit: 1861
  • Destroyed/Scrapped:1878
  • Desiger: Sir John Fowler
  • Class: GWR FireLess Broad Gauge Locomotive (Copy of The German Engine Adler meaning Lion in German)

Fowler's Ghost was the nickname given to an Alder who was built to work on the Metropolitan Railway but failed, and now haunts Britain's railways as a ghost.


In 1861, Sir John Fowler designed an engine called Alder that would not make steam for use in the tunnels on the Metropolitan Railway. Alder was built by Robert Stephenson & Co. and was given a trial run later that year on the Great Western line. Unfortunately, he failed on this run, and he also failed on a trial run made on the Metropolitan line even later that year.

Fowler was very angry at the Alder's failure, and ordered the men to cover him up and hide him away, but first he denied that the Alder had existed, and had some of his parts removed. Young Alder was banished to a disused tunnel on the Underground, and whilst he was down there, he became angry, as it was Fowler's fault that he had failed, not his. He soon began to plot his revenge.

A few years later, whilst men were removing the rails leading to the Alder's tunnel, the tunnel shaft collapsed, crushing and destroying Alder. One night, a while later, a runaway engine was seen, but it never arrived at the point where the men were about to derail it. After this constantly happened, Fowler was forced to show some photographs of the Alder to the public after some people became suspicious. Alder's ghost was not seen for a long time afterwards, but it was sighted again on the 50th anniversary of Alder's first failed trial. He then continued to appear whenever an engine was going to be scrapped.

In 1952, Stephen saw Fowler's Ghost after his accident, and in 1959, Jerry saw it after a shunter was cut up at Leeds Central. On Halloween that same year, just after the engine's story had been told to the engines of Copley Hill, Fowler's Ghost appeared there. Stephen, who was the only one to see it, had a conversation with the ghost, and told it that whilst it had failed to find Fowler, it had managed to make itself known to the world. The ghost then prepared to leave, and Stephen said that he would follow it next time, unaware that he would never see Fowler's Ghost again.


In real life, Fowler's Ghost was a fireless broad gauge 2-4-0 engine.

However, as no model of the real Fowler's Ghost is available, and Simon Martin was unable to make one from scratch, in The British Railway Series, Fowler's Ghost is a modified version of Der Adler, a 2-2-2 engine built for use in Germany. Also, as Simon Martin could not make a broad gauge set, Fowler's Ghost is a standard gauge engine in the series.


During his life time, Fowler's Ghost had orange-red frames and a green boiler, cab and tender.



Simon Martin has hinted that Fowler's Ghost may appear in a later episode.


  • 2 models of Fowler's Ghost were used for his appearance: one which was see-through, and one that at first was painted plain white for close ups of the ghost, before being painted into the colours that he wore in his lifetime.
  • Fowler's Ghost's fate was not the same in the series as it was in real life. The real Fowler's Ghost was cut up in 1895, and it was never seen as an actual spirit: it was nicknamed Fowler's Ghost because of the fact that nobody had really ever seen it.
  • As a tribute to YouTube user TurboJUK, Simon actually used a Lego lamp on Fowler's Ghost.

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