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“The brakes are full on. Must be a leak in the pipe, you have banged the coaches enough to make a leak in anything.”
―James' driver

James and the Coaches is a magazine story.


James is enjoying his life on the Island of Sodor, although he still have a lot to learn as the Fat Controller tells him that he must learn from his mistakes. Edward also tells James to be careful with the coaches, as they would not like being bumped. Soon everyone comes to admire James, as he thought to himself as a "splendid engine" and letting off steam. But as he does so, a shower of water falls into the Fat Controller's new top hat and soaks it. But James did not notice this as he thought he had better get going, and puffs quickly out of the station despite Edward and the coaches' warnings.

When they stop at the next station, two coaches are beyond the platform and the engines have to go back to let the passengers out. Unfortunately, the Fat Controller speaks severely to James telling him that if he misbehaves again, he will take away his red coat and have him painted blue, which James does not like to hear. Later he is very rough with the coaches and becoming more crosser as no one comes near him, and puffs out of the station while thinking he can pull coaches just as well as Gordon could. Out into the open line, James goes so fast that the coaches get fed up of his boastfulness and decide to stop. James wonders what is the matter, as his crew checks that his brakes are full on and leaks a pipe as he bangs the coaches enough to make a leak in anything.

The crew and the guard pounder at the problem, and come up with a solution that they need a newspaper and a bootlace to fix the pipe, but also wonder where can they get the bootlace and set to see the passengers for questioning. Soon the guard goes to see a smart man with a bootlace and asks if he give it to him. The man refuses to accept and the train will have to stop where it is if he does so. This has turned for the worse as the passengers all say what a bad railway it was, and then they tell the man how bad he is as well until at last, the man gives in and hands his laces over to the guard. At long last with a pad of newspaper tied round the hole in the brake pipe with the bootlace, James is on his away again - a much wiser engine as he takes care not to bump coaches again.




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