Fergus Ferry Parents’ Notes

I wrote Fergus the Ferry for my son, Tom, while I was travelling to work on the ferry. He liked it and telling “Fergus stories” became something we did as we went on ferry rides together.

We told the stories just as Tom was starting school and as he was going through school, from when he was 2 until he was 6. Inevitably, I couldn’t resist the temptation to include some parent/child lessons in the stories and some themes to help him with his life at school. So, there are stories about being brave, and facing up to challenges you may be afraid of, dealing with bullies, trusting your own judgment, believing in yourself and how we all learn and grow. These themes are completely incidental to the stories and you can ignore them completely but, in case you’re interested, here they are….

Fergus the Ferry

Being brave doesn’t mean not being afraid, it means overcoming your fear – as Captain Joe does in this book.

Fergus at the Zoo

Character is doing what’s right, even when others don’t. It takes confidence, but if you think something is wrong, be prepared to back your judgement.

Fergus at the Fire

Don’t play with fire….simple!

Fergus at the Race

Sometimes it’s best not to follow the crowd, but it’s not always easy.

Fergus at the Fireworks

Don’t cry wolf or people may ignore you when you really need help ( as George did).

Fergus Makes a Difference

Believe in yourself.
You are the best judge of what you can do – no one else.

Fergus to the Rescue

You never know when your dreams will come true

Fergus and Boris

It doesn’t matter if you’re big or you’re small,
It’s what’s in our hearts that’s the measure of us all.

Fergus and Angus

It takes an open mind to learn.

Fergus Breaks Loose

What’s good to know takes time to learn.
This story also highlights the ante-bullying theme which runs through the series.

Fergus Joins the Search

Discover your strengths and play to them.
In the Inner Harbour Angus, the youngest ferry, does better than all the others.

Fergus and Hydro

Friendship sometimes means giving something up.

Fergus and Max

Keep your nerve!…to the end.

Fergus and Lady Jane

We all have something to contribute.

High Tide Fergus

Don’t judge a book by its cover.
Lady Jane may be old, but she’s still fast!

Fergus and Ark

True friendship is built on mutual respect – like Fergus and Angus, not Boris and Horace.

Fergus Says Farewell

Loved ones sometimes have to leave us.

Fergus Thinks Fast

Discover what you like to do best and do it well.
Not everyone can be a world champion. But there’s a lot of happiness in doing what you like – well.

Fergus and Jet

Loved ones sometimes have to leave us…so they can come home better.

Fergus and Jess

Succeed on your strengths, not by pulling others down.

Fergus Goes to Sea

In the end, when all’s said and done,
There’s room in this world for everyone.


All through the series there’s a theme of what it means to be a true friend.

True friends:

  • Help each other out (Fergus Breaks Loose)
  • Stand up for each other (Fergus Breaks Loose)
  • Respect each others’ strengths (Fergus Joins the Search)
  • Are prepared to make sacrifices for each other (Fergus and Hydro)
  • Celebrate each others’ successes (Fergus and Jet)
  • Are inclusive (Fergus Thinks Fast)

False friends:

  • Bicker and quarrel (Fergus and Horace)
  • Compete with each other (Fergus and Hydro)
  • Aren’t there for each other (Fergus Goes to Sea)
  • Make fun of each other (Fergus and Ark).

We have had a wonderful time telling Fergus stories. I hope you do too.