Meet both of SHINING TIME STATION's 18 inch tall gold-dust powered sentinels who played the role of Mr. Conductor!
Indian Valley Railroad's Shining Time Station is a very special place as it is the home of "Mr. Conductor", aptly named because of his smart attire, a railroad conductor's uniform. Mr. Conductor comes from a lineage of 18-inch tall benevolent beings whose origins are as mysterious as their powers which are used sparingly. He can appear and disappear at will with the aid of magical gold dust, whose properties enable him to travel to and from the Island of Sodor - the land of talking trains. Mr. Conductor is fond of sharing tales of his engine friends' adventures, which often teaches a moral lesson applicable to any predicament his young human friends may find themselves in. He lives in a signal house on the wall mural of Shining Time Station.
Mr. Conductor's home: the mural signal house
Mr. Conductor is a shy individual who only reveals himself to children and adults whom he feels comfortable with. He also befriends and interacts with wildlife from monarch butterflies to squirrels and robins.
MR. CONDUCTOR (#1)
(Season 1- 'Tis a Gift)
We are first introduced to this person holding the title of Mr. Conductor during our first visit to Shining Time Station. A charming fellow with a Liverpool accent, Mr. Conductor's age is as mysterious as his comings and goings. He claims to have been working at Shining Time Station during the time when Stacy Jones' grandmother, Gracie was the stationmaster. Several decades later he was a special conductor on the same President's train that a young Harry Cupper worked during his early career in the Indian Valley Railroad.
This Mr. Conductor is reputed to have travelled places far and wide before returning to Shining Time Station when Stacy Jones took over as Station Master. Just over a year later, he decided to move to the North Pole to help Mr. Nicholas' operations.
Former Beatle drummer Ringo Starr portrayed Mr. Conductor during Season 1 (1989) until 'Tis a Gift (1990).
Did you know? Mr. Conductor's Indian Valley Railroad badge number is 771, and has demonstrated himself to be quite talented with a pair of drumsticks!
MR. CONDUCTOR (#2)
(Season 2- End)
Did you know? Mr. Conductor's Indian Valley Railroad badge number is 233.
When the first Mr. Conductor relocated to the North Pole, he asked his cousin to take over his duties at Shining Time Station. His stand-in is also officially and affectionately known by his trusty new friends as "Mr. Conductor". Speaking in an American accent, he is known to be more quirky than his predecessor. This Mr. Conductor also has a knack to communicate with his scaly, feathered and furry animal friends. He has a younger sister whose preferred method of travel is by piloting an airplane. Though benevolent and kind, errant magic gold dust split his personality into a malicious duplicate of himself on two occasions, which he luckily managed to control before his double caused too much damage with his mischief.
Only Mr. Conductor is adept using the magic gold dust properly. Unpredictable things happen when it is used by others. It can make suggestions and wishes come true - from amnesia, invisibility, falling in love, and switching personalities. It's also revealed that the magic gold dust has another interesting property; the ability to transport Mr. Conductor and others back in time when it is inserted into an hourglass. The time travelers recite a rhyme which takes them back in time through the Anything Tunnel, and the duration of their stay ends when the gold dust is done pouring to the bottom of the hourglass (How the Station Got its Name).
From Season 2 to the series' end, Mr. Conductor was played by comedian and social commentator George Carlin.