If you’re not familiar with “Thomas & Friends: King of the Railway“, King Godred lived in Ulfstead Castle. He fought off invaders from the island with the aid of his knights in armour. Life was good under Godred’s reign and it was considered a Golden Age. Godred wore a golden crown. At some point, King Godred’s crown was stolen by thieves. The thieves were caught, but the crown was not seen again for hundreds of years. Thomas and his friends go on to help solve the mystery of the missing crown.

After watching the film, Ioan and Finn were keen to set up a tray of Ulfstead Castle.


  • Castle
  • Brio train set
  • Thomas trains
  • Household objects


Whilst Cian was having a nap, Ioan and Finny set up the tray. I was a bit nervous that by the time they had finished creating Ulfstead Castle, it was already time to wake Cian up and all have a play in the paddling pool. Ioan (age 6) takes a lot of pride in his creations, whereas Cian (20 months) is at the age where he is just interested in knocking everything down.

This is the first time they had all played with it and luckily Cian was trying to join in with the play. When he did knock some of the castle over, Ioan just turned it in to part of his game.

Ioan does love a bit of role play. Cian started dismantling the castle, but Ioan carried on regardless.

Finny joined in with his dragon. I love watching them all play alongside each other, but all absorbed in their own story line. As you can see, there’s never a quiet moment in our house.

DfES Early Learning Goals (2017)

Communication and language

ELG 03 – Speaking:

Children express themselves effectively, showing awareness of listeners’ needs. They use past, present and future forms accurately when talking about events that have happened or are to happen in the future. They develop their own narratives and explanations by connecting ideas or events.

Understanding the world

ELG 13 – People and communities:

Children talk about past and present events in their own lives and in the lives of family members. They know that other children don’t always enjoy the same things, and are sensitive to this. They know about similarities and differences between themselves and others, and among families, communities and traditions.

ELG 14 – The world:

Children know about similarities and differences in relation to places, objects, materials and living things. They talk about the features of their own immediate environment and how environments might vary from one another.

Expressive arts and design

ELG 17 – Being imaginative:

Children use what they have learnt about media and materials in original ways, thinking about uses and purposes. They represent their own ideas, thoughts and feelings through design and technology, art, music, dance, role-play and stories.