Taunton Trains began life around 2001 and began to fill the gap in ‘local' based web sites which had already taken off in Devon and Cornwall. Initially it covered just local workings and started small, but over the years has grown beyond all recognition, into a website which is updated and used on a daily basis. The website is now getting around 8000 hits a week, 50,000 individual pages views and transferring some 2 – 3 GB of bandwidth within this period. It has become so popular that a private server is now used to host Taunton Trains in order to prevent problems with bandwidth restrictions put in place by standard suppliers.Taunton Trains now sports an impressive amount of Archive Date which is updated on a weekly, monthly and six monthly basis. The site has its own News Page which covers rare workings and newsworthy articles relating to the Taunton's rail operations. It also has it's own ‘Tours' section which details special workings, charters, and rare freight which will be passing Taunton. Furthermore the website hosts more dedicated train logs, in the shape of ‘The Moorswater Cement' and ‘The Fawley Tanks', the latter being one of the largest online collections of data dedicated to just one train. This allows users to track the history of just one train from it's initial birth in 1988 to the present day workings!
Taunton Trains isn't just a website for the modern traction enthusiast, there are several pages devoted to the bygone age of Steam and Diesel including a section where people are actively encouraged to Email their memories of workings or incidents they remember to the website. There are also links to the local preserved line at the West Somerset Railway. The site is also accessed by many people in Taunton just to look at when the next Steam Train will be passing through the town!
We have taken advantage of the advances in digital camera technology and the latest digital editing techniques to bring top quality images to the viewer. There are a wide range of photos hosted on the main website. These digital advances also allow the website to be one of the most up to date on the web. It's not been unknown to have a train photographed and online before it's even left Taunton Station! Regular contributions are also displayed from local photographers who are usually on hand to catch the rarer workings when others are at work. Rest assured between most of the regular contributors to the website, not much is missed, their help is invaluable to the smooth operation of the website and Taunton Trains fully appreciates the time and effort of those who help out on a regular basis.
Taunton Trains isn't just the effort of one person any more, it's a team effort to keep the site running and up to date, and I'm eternally gratefully to all those who contribute information, photo's, and forthcoming workings to the site. Thanks must also be made to the current web server host which allows an un interrupted service for Taunton Trains.