Introduction

Welcome to my railway website. I hope you will enjoy browsing through these pictures. As well as current pictures, I will continuously add archive pictures taken over the last 39 years, with classic diesel traction predominating. I will try to update the site every few days with the emphasis on variety. The picture on the home page will change each time new pictures are added. Many thanks to all those people who have provided information (especially for some of the archive pictures), and have commented on the pictures. The compliments with regard to the quality of the archive pictures in particular are very much appreciated. High resolution versions are available for publication use, please contact me for details.

I have been interested in railways since the late 1960s, but only starting taking photographs seriously with the acquisition of my first 'proper' camera in 1978. Initially I did not stray far from home, but gradually ventured further afield, until during the 1990s I was travelling extensively throughout the UK in search of railway subjects. Nowadays, with far less of interest happening, I find that I tend to concentrate on my local area once more, with the Cotswold Line, Oxford to Banbury, and Didcot to Swindon lines being my usual subjects, although with the electrification of the latter route, I may well have to travel further afield once again. I do still make occasional forays to other areas, but I very rarely chase railtours all over country like I once used to. Although obviously like everybody else I have favourite classes (37, 50, etc), I have generally taken a broader view than a lot of photographers, believing that the mundane and seemingly uninteresting will one day seem historic and interesting. I have always liked HSTs and the humble DMU and certainly nowadays I find them just as interesting as the rather dull freight scene. In fact it was the demise of the classic classes of diesel locos and the general downturn in freight traffic at the end of the 1990s that curtailed my desire to be traveling all over the country in search of freight workings. I find the privatised passenger railway with its seemingly never ending livery changes far more interesting than the very repetitive freight pictures that some photographers seem to regard as the only 'proper' railway photography. Interestingly, as time goes by more and more photographers seem to chase fewer and fewer workings and in part this is what puts me off following what everybody else does. When I first started railway photography and there was far more of interest to photograph I very rarely ever met another photographer!

Like most photographers, I prefer photos to be taken in full sun, with the sun 'on the nose', however, I will also take pictures in other lighting conditions, and I particularly like atmospheric lighting (sunlit with dark clouds behind, etc). I will take pictures in dull conditions, but these will usually either be unrepeatable workings, or taken in locations that would be impossible in full sun. However, unlike a lot of websites, this site will not be padded out with endless pictures of light engine moves and Class 66 hauled freights in poor light, and this together with the desire wherever possible not to repeat locations too frequently, will result in less pictures being added than you may be used to seeing elsewhere. I am not one of those photographers that seem to operate a quota system, where they have to take a certain number of pictures, regardless of weather or subject matter! Researching some of the archive captions can be challenging at times, and very time consuming. I try to write the captions so they will not become out of date too easily, however this is inevitable for some subjects. I will try to alter any obvious ones as they occur later on.

To make navigation around the site easy, the 100 most recent images (including scanned archive pictures) can be seen on the Recent Additions page, with the latest pictures at the top of the page. All images including these new additions are available from the various individual class or category pages. On these pages, the pictures are arranged numerically, or in the case of the various miscellaneous and EMU pages, by class, then numerically. Each individual loco or unit's pictures are then arranged chronologically. A slight variation is the placing of the newer classes of 750V DC EMU that have a dual voltage capability at the end of the page, as otherwise this would break the approximately chronological order of the previous classes. The nameplate page also includes a few worksplates, numberplates and train headboards. Generally speaking the order of the diesel locos follows TOPS numbering regardless of number carried, but due to the complicated and multiple renumberings of the Class 37 & 47 fleets in particular, the pictures are arranged by the number carried, so the same loco may appear in several different places. A few pages are arranged alphabetically, including the narrow gauge & miniature, where the particular railway is listed alphabetically. The Miscellaneous Locomotives and DMU pages contain pictures of all the various types that I only have a few pictures of, whereas the Miscellaneous Steam page contains pictures of locos of other than the big four companies, principally ex industrial locos. Railbuses are included along with the miscellaneous DMUs. I have given Class 73s their own page, in view of their unique electro diesel design, and because I have as many pictures of them as all other electric classes put together. Where there are a large number of pictures of one class, they will be spilt over several pages. In this case there will be arrows near the page title allowing you to move between the various pages. These multiple pages often (but not necessarily always) correspond with loco sub-classes. Generally all the pages feature motive power of some sort, but I have also included a few pages which don't. I have always been fascinated by disused railways where the rails are still in situ, there being something fascinating about a line of rusty rails disappearing into the undergrowth. I have therefore added a small selection of these pictures on the Disused Railways page. These all feature closed (or virtually so!) lines with the rails still intact. Sometimes these have subsequently been lifted and sometimes the line has been resurrected. I have also added pages for signal boxes and other railway infrastructure. To help you search for a particular loco, location, railtour operator, or just about anything else, please use the search facility below. Please bear in mind however, that it will take at least a day for new additions to appear in the search results. 

If you enjoy browsing this website you may be interested in my other two sites. The Fairford Branch Line is a pictorial history of my local, and now closed branch line, whilst Hondawanderer.co.uk not only contains my non-railway pictures, but also pictures from the Tom Derrington railway archive. This is a very interesting collection of 1970s and 1980s images. This part of the site is presently under construction.

This website now contains 12,736 images.

All images and website design copyright 1978-2017 Martin Loader.

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