BBC Waterloo Road Wiki
Lindsay James
Portrayed by Jenna Coleman
First Appearance Series 5 Episode 1
Last Appearance Series 5 Episode 9
Cause/Reason Jailed for the murder of her father and then ran away after release.
Mother Marion James
Father Tony James (Deceased)
Sisters Emily James

Lindsay James was a pupil of Waterloo Road, from John Foster Private School, she is the older protective sister of Emily James.

She was in many vicious feuds against Michaela White and they were both the centre of the gang war between Waterloo Road and the newly merged John Fosters Private School. She is exceptionally intelligent, but cold, violent and condescending, and she is renowned for ferocious mood swings.

Through out the beginning of Series 5 it is clear that Lindsay is hiding something. A strong hint is given in Episode 1 when she rushes off to be sick in the toilets as she arrives for her first day at Waterloo Road, and when it is announced that her dad has been killed, she learns that her mum has been arrested and is going to be charged for his murder.

Lindsay was found guilty with the murder of her father (of which her mother was on trial for), Tony James, in Series 5 Episode 9 after covering it up because her mother told her to. When she was taken away in a police car, Michaela White apologised for everything. Lindsay was charged and sent to prison for the murder of her dad. Lindsay did not return to the school after her release from jail. Emily went searching for Lindsay but she didn't want to go home or back to Waterloo Road so she ran away. Em continued to go to Waterloo Road until Series 7 Episode 30.


New lower sixth John Foster's girl Lindsay James is the daughter of fairly well-to-do parents and a hard nut to crack. She has traditionally been a model student, but after her mother, Marion, is arrested on suspicion of murdering her father, Lindsay's behaviour becomes increasingly disruptive.

Lindsay is a social time bomb – going off like a rocket at the smallest infraction. Unable to face the enormity of events at home, she throws herself aggressively into the growing gang war and soon finds herself at the head of the John Foster's girls. And the only time we ever see her let down her "hard as nails" persona is when she's looking out for her little sister, Em.


Lindsay and her younger sister, Emily first appear on the first day of the new school year attending Waterloo Road, and Lindsay promptly rushes to the toilets to be sick. As a former John Fosters pupil, Lindsay does not like the prospect of having to attend Waterloo Road. Frustrated about family life, she lashes out at bully Michaela White in an English lesson, leading to not one, but two fights with her throughout the day.

However, Rachel Mason is convinced there is a lot more to Lindsay's anger than first appears. When the police arrive to inform the girls that their father has died, Rachel's suspicions are confirmed and she becomes sure that Lindsay knows a lot more about what was happening at her home the morning of her dad's death than she is letting on, another clue given to the viewer when Lindsay is sick, showing her worried reaction to what has happened.

Like her fellow John Fosters students, Lindsay regards the Waterloo Road pupils as behind in their learning. When Amy Porter falsely accuses Bolton Smilie of rape, Lindsay ensures that his reptutation is dragged through the mud, However, her plot becomes unstuck when Amy confesses that she made the allegation up, after Bolton rejected her advances. Aside from her female John Fosters counterparts, her only confidant is her younger sister, Emily. Seeing fellow pupil Karla Bentham giving Emily some comfort enrages her, because she is over-protective of her younger sister and Lindsay gathers together her mates, who proceed to warn Karla to stay away from her sister.

Lindsay forms a very strong relationship with headteacher Rachel Mason. Rachel is persistent with Lindsay and determined to find out what is causing her so much pain. Despite Executive Head Max Tyler's best efforts to divert her from Lindsay, Rachel finally gets through to the young girl and Lindsay even asks her to attend the court case for her mum. She later admits to Rachel that she killed her dad to protect her younger sister from being abused the same way she was. Rachel blames herself for not noticing but she does her best to comfort Lindsay and she looks after her sister Emily James after Lindsay is jailed. But later in the series it is revealed she has been put on bail from help Michaela White plus her little sister Emily and her mother Marion.

Lindsay James had been fighting with Michaela White three times. When Lindsay got arrested Michaela and Ros McCain said to her they will try to get her out of jail. Michaela tried to support her when Emily James and Marion James came and tell her how Lindsay in jail.


During her mother Marion's trial, Lindsay breaks down and admits to Rachel that she had in fact killed her father, and her mother had covered for her. Shocked, Rachel convinces Lindsay to admit the truth to the court. On doing so, Lindsay is later charged with murder and remains in police custody.

Michaela White, who originally attended the trial for some payback against Lindsey, and Ros McCain, who came to support Lindsay, are appalled by the truth about the sexual abuse that Lindsay suffered at her father's hands. Upon Lindsay being arrested and entering the police car, Michaela and Ros run to the scene, and promise Lindsay that they will ensure she gets out as the police car drives away. It is later revealed she is on bail.


  • “Dad, she doesn’t want to go!” (First line)
  • “Shouting ‘oi’ to me, Michaela? What do you want, a punch in the face?”
  • “No-one makes my little sister cry. If you so much as look at her again, you’ll get worse than this, you understand? Breathe a word, and your life’s over, yeah? Finished! You can keep that and all.” (To Karla when she attacked her)
  • “Shut up Em, it’s sorted. I said I’m sorry and that’s it. She’s still a nosey little cow.”
  • ”Yeah.” (Final line, when she is charged with the murder of her dad)

Behind the scenes

  • Jenna Coleman joined the cast of Waterloo Road immediately after a four-year run on Emmerdale in which she played the character of Jasmine Thomas, whose story arc concluded in identical fashion to Lindsay, with the character killing a person, engaging in a cover-up, going on trial, and being sent to prison, never to be heard from (on the show) again.