"Tale of the Unnamed Engine" is the first book in The British Railway Stories. It was published in e-book format for the Amazon Kindle on July 14th 2012. It was also released in limited paperback format of 2,100 copies on August 3rd 2013.
A young boy called Stanley is visiting a railway museum when he suddenly finds himself talking to one of the exhibits: an old steam locomotive named Stephen. Stephen explains that he is a locomotive built for the former London and North Eastern Railway and they have a discussion about the LNER.
Stephen then proceeds to tell Stanley a story from just after Nationalisation in 1948, about an engine who had just entered service unnamed, and how that engine earned his name: W.P. Allen.
- Sir Ralph
- A Thompson engine
- Scott (does not speak)
- Violet (does not speak)
- Mallard (does not speak)
- Stephen Holden (does not speak)
- Deltic (cameo)
- Duchess of Hamilton (cameo)
- Ellerman Lines (cameo)
- Hardwicke (cameo)
- Furness Railway No. 3 (cameo)
- Midland Spinner No. 673 (cameo)
- GNR C1 No. 251 (cameo)
- Evening Star (cameo)
- King George V (cameo)
- GER No. 87 (cameo)
- LMS No. 2500 (cameo)
- Papyrus (cameo)
- A Thompson B1 (cameo)
- Western Fusilier (cameo)
- Class 76 No. 26020 (cameo)
- The story in the book is told in the way Simon Martin had wanted the episodes of the series to be told: Stephen telling the story in the present day.
- According to Simon Martin, there were originally going to be four stories in the book. However, they were cut down to one story to save time while editing and illustrating the book.
- In 2018 a reprint of 60 paperback copies were printed for the 90th birthday of LNER B12 8572 (the locomotive that is the basis for Stephen).
- In the image, "Sir Ralph's Folly", the A4 on the right still has the templates used by the artist to create the lettering on its tender.