Photograph Archive and
Research Facilities

The Kidderminster Railway Museum photograph archive currently houses over 150,000 prints and negatives, and about 25,000 colour slides, dating from the late1800s generally to the end of the steam era in 1968, although the era of more modern traction is also becoming increasingly represented.  The photographs cover most areas of the country, from Wick to Penzance, but there is naturally a bias towards the Great Western Railway system. They cover subjects from locomotives to carriages, permanent way, stations, staff and all manner of other railway subjects. The black and white and colour images are fully documented and are available for private research or for publication (subject to payment of a reproduction fee).   We have also just introduced an archive of tram photographs.  For full details click here.  The R.A.T. archive of black and white and colour photographs is also available through the KRM offices.  For full details click here.

There are a number of well known photographers whose collections are now deposited in the museum. including W. Potter, V.R.Webster, B. Moone, G. Sanders, G.E.S. Parker, D. Powell, P.J.Lynch, and R.J. Leonard. We have also come to an arrangement with Westinghouse whereby we hold their early photograph collection which contains both prints and some glass plate negatives.  The photographs are principally of signalling subjects, from details of wiring and component parts to more general views of installations. There is a lot of material to document and we have concentrated initially on the British subjects, but there is a quantity of foreign subjects which we will deal with later. We are also custodians of the photograph collections of the Signalling Record Society and the Roy F Burrows Midland Railway Trust.

Here are a few photographs from the collection for you as a sample. Please click on the picture if you wish to see them any larger: (these photographs will be changed soon to include some more of our recent acquisitions and some colour slides - sorry, we have promised for a long time, but other work has prevailed. Please be patient - or come and help!)

'Crab' no. 42797 on goods train
on the Settle and Carlisle line

Driver Gilbert Howls on his retirement
with fireman J Mason at Hereford

Atlantic no. 4460 leaving Hadley
tunnel with a Pullman train

Women loading coke into wagons at
Southampton gasworks circa 1918

  'Jubilee' no. 45662 Kempenfelt
departing from Bristol Temple Meads

Inside the boiler shop at
Eastleigh works

If you have a particular interest send us an e-mail at stating your name, address and details of photographs you would like to see and we will search our system for you. Please be specific rather than general with your request, ie state individual locations, engine numbers, subjects etc. We will send you small laser prints of each image we find (subject to a maximum of 60. Please note that if we find more than 60, then any additional prints will be charged for at cost after consultation with yourself, although we can supply a text-only catalogue). Should you then wish to order photographic prints of our images, all you have to do is quote the unique reference number - and pay, of course! Sample charges are as follows:

Black and white prints

3.5"x 5"..........1.50each
5" x 7" ...........3.00each
10" x 8" ..........5.00each
Larger sizes are available on request.

    Colour prints

5" x 7" .........4.00each
10" x 8" .......6.00each


A full price list including postage and packing, copying fees and reproduction fees where appropriate will be sent to you with the results of your enquiry about photographs.

Here are a few more of the varied photographs in our collection:


Transhipping an engine to work in the Isle of Wight

Aftermath of the accident at Shrewsbury in 1907

Electric meets Diesel accidentally at Stafford in 1975

Signal gantry at Newcastle central station

We also have a good collection of books, magazines, plans, timetables, and other associated paperwork in the library which is also available for genuine research. These can be viewed by appointment only.

We are always looking to add to our photographic collection. Have you any photographs that you would be willing to deposit with us?

We might even have a picture of you as a youngster 'spotting' at your local station. If you don't ask, you won't know!