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“Common tank engines indeed! We'll show them!”

Trouble in the Shed is a magazine story.


The Fat Controller sits in his office listening to the noise outside. The stationmaster informs Sir Topham that Henry is sulking, there is no train and the passengers are getting cross. The Fat Controller is not amused and heads to the shed at once. The Fat Controller finds Gordon, Henry and James looking very cross. The engines inform their controller that they will not shunt like common tank engines. The Fat Controller reminds them that engines on his railway will do as they are told before heading off to find Edward. He instructs Edward to leave his shunting duties and push coaches. So Edward finds coaches for the three engines and, that day, the trains run as usual.

Next morning, Edward is upset; Gordon clanks past hissing at him rudely. Edward tells his troubles to the Fat Controller who admits that they do need another tank engine. He goes to the workshops where he is shown a variety of engines. Finally, he settles for a smart, little, green engine who promises to work hard. The Fat Controller names the engine Percy and takes him back to the yard. The Fat Controller introduces Percy to Edward and asks the old engine to show Percy what to do. Percy learns quickly and the two engines have a happy afternoon.

Next day, Thomas arrives back at the yard where the Fat Controller thanks him for coming so quickly. The Fat Controller explains the situation and asks Thomas, Percy and Edward to run the line for a while. Thomas and Edward work the main line whilst Percy runs the branch line. The passengers do not mind there being fewer trains as they know the big engines are being taught a lesson. Meanwhile, Gordon, Henry, and James are cold and miserable. They wish they had not been so silly.





  • In the first illustration, the sheds are completely coloured brown.
  • The top of Percy's coal bunker is painted green in one illustration.
  • In the fifth illustration, Gordon is missing the red lining around his firebox.
  • Henry is in his new shape, despite not being rebuilt until after Percy arrived.


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