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Trouble in the Shed

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This article is about the episode. You may be looking for the magazine story.
"That's the one! If I choose you, will you work hard?"
"Oh Sir, yes, Sir!"
"That's a good engine! I'll call you Percy.
— Sir Topham Hatt and Percy
Trouble in the Shed

David Mitton


David Mitton
Robert D. Cardona


Reverend W. Awdry
Britt Allcroft
David Mitton


Ringo Starr (UK/US)
George Carlin (US)

Air date

November 27th,
1984 (UK)
April 27th,
1987 (AUS)
March 19th,
1989 (US)
July 17th,
1990 (JAP)
April 19th,
1993 (George
Carlin US

Previous episode

Tenders and

Next episode

Percy Runs Away

Trouble in the Shed is the sixteenth episode of the first season. In the US, this episode first aired on the Shining Time Station episodes Whistle While you Work and Schemer's Robot.


At Knapford, there is no sign of the morning train, causing the passengers to become angry. The Fat Controller is told by the stationmaster that Henry is refusing to leave his shed, so he goes to find out what is going on. Gordon tells him that he, Henry and James will no longer fetch their own coaches or shunt in sidings. The Fat Controller is angry that the bigger engines are trying to tell him what they are willing to do and leaves for Wellsworth to enlist Edward as a station pilot to ensure that the day's trains run as normal, noting to himself that life at the yard has not been the same since Thomas left to run his branch line. Edward is happy to shunt the coaches and the rest of the day's trains run as usual.

Next day, the Fat Controller visits the yard to see how Edward is getting along. To his dismay, he sees Gordon puff by and wheesh loudly at Edward. Edward tells the Fat Controller that the big engines have been insulting and wheeshing steam at him. The Fat Controller assures Edward that tender engines do shunt, but decides that he must bring a new tank engine to the yard to permanently fix the problem.

Visiting the engine workshop, the Fat Controller is shown all kinds of engines. Soon he sees a smart green saddletank and knows this is the one he wants. The Fat Controller asks the engine if he is willing to work hard. The engine eagerly responds that he is. With that, the matter is settled. The Fat Controller names him Percy and takes him back to the yard.

The Fat Controller asks Edward to get Percy acquainted with the yard and the pair set off for work. Edward is very impressed by his hard work and loud wheeshing - something he learned in the workshop so as to be heard. The Fat Controller then decides to send for Thomas and calls all three engines to the yard for an announcement. He tells them that he has shut-up the big engines in the shed until they learn to behave and that, in Gordon, Henry, and James' absence, the two tank engines and Edward will run the railway.

Edward and Thomas are put in charge of the main line, while Percy takes care of the branch line as well as looking after Annie and Clarabel. While there are fewer trains, the passengers understand that the three engines are doing their best to keep the railway running and that the big engines were in the middle of learning a lesson.

In the sheds, Gordon, James, and Henry are left cold, lonely, and miserable. The three finally start to realise just how silly they have been.




  • This episode is based on the story of the same name from The Railway Series book, Troublesome Engines.
  • Despite not having a speaking role in most versions of this episode, Henry actually speaks in the Japanese version.
  • The engines under the tarps in the workshops are Gordon, Henry, James, Edward, and Marklin.
  • Stock footage from Thomas' Train is used.
  • The scene of Sir Topham Hatt putting his hat on is cut in the restored version.


  • Just before Gordon hisses he is passing Edward; but when he stops hissing, he is passing Edward again.
  • In the close-up of the Fat Controller talking to Edward at Tidmouth Sheds, he has some small holes in his chin.
  • In the shot of Edward being "wheeshed" by Gordon, the Fat Controller is not seen on the platform.
  • It is obvious the sheet covering Percy is lifted off by a crew member.
  • When Edward and Percy shunt, Edward's trucks push the buffers out of place.
  • When Henry comes out of and reverses into the shed he is in his new shape. To add to that, he moves without a driver.
  • Because stock footage is used, the background behind Sir Topham Hatt is Knapford.
  • When Edward says "I can't wheesh like that!" his tender is missing, he has Thomas' whistle sound, and James, Gordon, and Henry are not in the shed.
  • In one scene, Annie and Clarabel are facing the wrong way.
  • Henry, Gordon and James keep changing positions in the shed throughout the episode.
  • When Thomas and Edward pass each other, Thomas' brake coach is backwards.
  • Percy already has his 6 before coming to the Fat Controller's railway.
  • In the close-up of Henry looking surprised, he is not on the rails. Also, the tracks from the shed end at the camera.
  • Some of the people shouting at Knapford have blu-tak on their shoes.
  • In the close up of Henry looking angry and the close up of him looking surprised, one of his wheelarches is missing.
  • When Edward meets Percy, his tender is tilted.

In Other Languages

Language Name Meaning
Spanish Un Problema para Sir Topham Hatt A Problem for Sir Topham Hatt
Norwegian Trøbbel i lokomotivstallen Trouble in the Engine Shed
Welsh Streic yn y Sied Strike in the Shed
Dutch Tumult in het Depot Uproar at the Depot
Italian Guai al deposito Trouble in Store
Croatian Nevolje u trgovini Trouble in Store
Japanese きかんこのもめごと Trouble in the Shed
Finnish Vaja ongelmat Shed Problems
Brazilian Portuguese A Greve The Strike
French Des problèmes dans le dépôt Of problems in the depot
German Ärger im depot Trouble in the Depot



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