- “You can't stop here!"
"Yes, I can! Look how the sun is flashing off my new paintwork!”
- ―the driver and Spencer
Sunburnt Spencer is a magazine story.
Spencer has been given a new coat of paint at the works and is feeling very smug. Percy and Edward have to close their eyes because Spencer is so bright. Spencer is glad it is such a sunny day so he can show off his new paint job. Spencer puffs off onto the main line in search of the sunniest spot. Percy warns speedy Spencer that it is bad to be out in the sunshine for too long, but Spencer does not listen.
Spencer stops in the middle of the line. His driver tells him he cannot stop here, but Spencer is adament. Suddenly, Edward puffs around the bend with his passenger train. Spencer is too busy admiring himself to move. Luckily, a signalman sees the danger and changes the points so that Edward can go around. Then, Percy arrives from the other direction, hurrying to fetch coal trucks. Percy and his driver realise Spencer is not going to move and they swerve down a siding to avoid hitting him. Percy thunders down the siding and collides with the buffers instead.
By now, the Fat Controller has heard all about Spencer blocking the main line and orders the silver engine to move. Spencer says that he does not feel well; he has been out in the sun for far too long. Spencer shiny paintwork is now all cracked and covered with blisters. On his way to the Works, Percy reminds Spencer that he had tried to warn him. Now, Spencer is sorry he did not listen.
Spencer has to have his paintwork done again which means rubbing off the old, cracked paint. Spencer does not feel very handsome now. Edward tries to cheer Spencer up and the sleek silver engine vows never to spend very long in the hot sun again.
- In the final illustration, a workman appears to be sanding down Spencer's face.