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Site Problems, 5th September, 2014

Hi, just wanted to give a heads up on BRDatabase.
At the moment, part of the site is disabled (the sites data) because of the heavy workload inflicted on the servers (my inefficient code to blame). I have two options:

  • Re-write the code to be more efficient (using pre-prepared data, in the style of a data warehouse)
  • Leave it alone pending new website

I am in the process of improving the data immeasurably, by redoing the data using SLS, Railway Observer, Trans Illustrated and other sources (e.g. Yeadon and Peto etc...). I am also looking at a complete revamp of the website, possibly including a member section (probably free). which will allow customisation, page history and favourites. There will be far more information pertaining to individual locomotives, including sightings (shed visits etc...), parsed from old railway magazines. Also, I will at long last fill the gap between late 1949 and the end of 1950 which has caused so much confusion over the past few years. I will also get the data for diesels, electrics and units in place right upto 1997 (and eventually into the 21st century).

Because of the amount of work I have to do, I will get the sites data up and running again in the old format, pending new development.


Welcome to BRDatabase! The purpose of this site is to bring together varied and disparate sources of data including books, webpages, magazines and personal records and present this data in a homogenous manner, allowing the user to search for data in context, i.e. not in just a 'dry' statistical manner. However, to achieve this 'grand' aim, I need your help! Data sources, anecdotes, photographs, trainspotting logs etc... will all be welcome. The more accurate the better.

There will be errors, so please bear with me and either report the error by using the contact page, or by registering on the forum - link above.

A list of the latest updates can be found here, while a summary of which months have been processed so far can be found here.

Finding Data

The easiest way to find data is to type it in the 'Quick Search' box on the left: the box will accept locomotive numbers, locomotive names, shed names/codes, scrapyards, builders, works and even CME's. If you enter '1' in the box, you will get a lot of matches, so if you are looking for locomotive number 1 (e.g. D1 'Scafell Pike', or LMS Fowler 2-6-2T No 1) put a hash (#) after the criteria, e.g. 1#. Furthermore, specifying S1# will only return Steam locos (also works for Diesel and Electrics too).

Scrapping Data

Much as I would like to have a time machine, I can't afford one, so I cannot go back and verify the data that is used in this website. I have spent many many hours (sorry missus) working on this site and using data from a whole host of sources and my aim is to be as accurate as is possible.
To this end, it has been brought to my attention by the HSBT project that the scrapping details of thousands of steam locomotives in the 1960's was fabricated by an individual (for what reasons, one can only guess). This information has been published in good faith in the 'What Happened to Steam' series, authored by Peter Hands. The HSBT project is attempting to piece together the correct scrapping information from original documents and this will be published in due course. I suggest that you take the scrapping details of locos broken up between 1960 and 1968 with a little pinch of salt until the full picture emerges in the next year or two.
Please also note that even when a scrapping site is verified, the date of scrapping quoted may be the sale date or arrival date and may not represent the exact scrapping. Readers observations are welcomed!

A big thank you to any photographers whose material appears here - permission was sought and received. Links to photographic collections are under each image used.

Running Costs

If you find this site useful, maybe you would be interested in helping with the running costs. Any donations to help me with the upkeep of this site will be gratefully received! I have introduced a tiny amount of advertising but it doesn't cover the costs and I don't want to cover the site with adverts!

A big thank you to those who have made a donation - much appreciated!!!

All the best, Ian

Last update was: 2013-02-04 16:54:12