ontrackplant.com 10th Birthday!!

26 December 2009

ontrackplant.com 10th Birthday!!

29th December 2009 sees the website celebrate it's big tenth anniversary...

Where it all started...

It only seems like yesterday, but it is in fact 10 years ago when Vince set about creating the first version of this website in that strange lull after Christmas and just before the dawning of the year 2000. With all the talk of the "Millennium Bug" at the time it is perhaps surprising it lasted 3 days, let alone ten years!

The website initially started to fill a gap in the internet "market" for fans of plant and machinery. It was also based around the need to find the answer to a query - regarding a certain machine at Hitchin (that is still there today!) The "mysteries" page lasted for a few months but most were quickly answered as more people became involved.


We'd like to take this opportunity to thank all the very many contributors who have sent in photos, sightings and news over the years - without you it would not have grown into the informative website that it has become today.

We'd first like to thank Rob Volland who ran the gbrail website back in 1999 and gave us a few mentions at the time. Many people (including Ben and many of our regulars) found us through this site.

As ever we would like to thank Roger Butcher, Peter Hall and Alex Hall at NPT Publishing who have continued to help us with updates. We will hopefully continue to work well in partnership with the OTP book which remains an excellent publication.

Special thanks to John Griffiths & Nick Tompkin for continuing to deal with the everyday running of the Road Railer pages and providing us with occasional RR news summary articles. The website has now grown into something that is far too big for one person to run successfully so we are very grateful for the extra help, I'm sure others are too.

Thanks also to Jonathan Flood for looking after the Wickham side of things and updating us with news, and of course running the Wickham Yahoogroup. If anyone is interested in doing something similar - perhaps news on a specific area or type of vehicle - then please get in touch.

With increasing contributions from people who work on the railway (mainly through photo comments) the site has become much more than a place for numbers - it has become a place for learning about this interesting aspect of the rail network, as well as a place for healthy discussion!

Party like it's 1999

And for those of you who weren't around at the beginning - another opportunity to see how it all started!

Click this to see how the website looked in 1999

We've seen several incarnations since then but I think you will agree it has come a long way since the early days!

12 Days of OTP Christmas

To celebrate our birthday we will be hosting a "12 Days of OTP Christmas" with a feast of photos, old and new, between 26th December and 6th January 2010:

On the first day of Christmas, ontrackplant.com gave to me... an emergency vehicle from Yate

On the second day of Christmas, ontrackplant.com gave to me... two Wickham trolleys

On the third day of Christmas, ontrackplant.com gave to me... three Capel Tractors

On the fourth day of Christmas, ontrackplant.com gave to me... four recovery vans

On the fifth day of Christmas, ontrackplant.com gave to me... five Unimogs

On the sixth day of Christmas, ontrackplant.com gave to me... six lorries chugging

On the seventh day of Christmas, ontrackplant.com gave to me... seven ploughs a-ploughing

On the eighth day of Christmas, ontrackplant.com gave to me... eight wagons rolling

On the ninth day of Christmas, ontrackplant.com gave to me... nine cranes a-lifting

On the tenth day of Christmas, ontrackplant.com gave to me... ten tampers tamping

On the eleventh day of Christmas, ontrackplant.com gave to me... eleven RRVs

On the twelfth day of Christmas, ontrackplant.com gave to me... twelve classic moments

OTP Photo Competition

Many thanks to all those who entered. I think the photo that received the most reaction has to be voted the winner - and that is Tony's excellent photo here

Congratulations Tony - if you can email us with a postal address we will send you your prize!

Happy new year!

Vince & Ben



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  • Paul Cheesemore avatar

    Paul Cheesemore

    Happy 10th Birthday for the 29th lads - keep up the very good work and here's to another 10 years!!!

  • Robin Morel

    Robin Morel

    Happy Birthday, a valuable internet resource and history in the making, well done you have done a good job here!

  • David Rodger

    David Rodger

    Many Happy Returns and congratulations on your 10th anniversary.

    ontrackplant.com is my Home page which says it all !!!!!!!

    David R

  • Ben Williams avatar

    Ben Williams Editor

    12 Days of OTP Christmas draws to a close with the final 12 photos today. We hope you have enjoyed this extravaganza of pics over the last 12 days.

    After all this over-indulgence we'll be taking a short break while we digest all the OTP goodness before returning to our regular photo triplets in a week or so.

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