I happen to have a copy of old Space: 1889 rule book put out by Game Designers Workshop back in it's heyday. I find I'm intrigued by the universe it created, but the gaming system is really clunky. So I thought about using the DWAITAS rules instead.
The basic idea of the game world is that during the height of the Victorian Era, Thomas Edison develops (or as it will be in my game world; stole from Nicola Tesla) a kind of propulsion system that makes space travel possible. Exploring the inner solar system, they find the other worlds inhabited and meeting the expectations of early astronomers. Venus is a wet swampy world inhabited by dinosaurs and lizard men, Mars is a dry world home to the noble but slowly dying martian races.
For the most part, I think the Doctor Who system could be used with relatively minor tweaking. The attributes, skills and traits should be all usable for the most part (except the ones specific to time travel) though I might need to pick up Primeval since it's rules about groups and animals might be useful for what I'm doing.
You would have to come up with a whole list of minor traits for players based on steampunk though - Victorian etiquette, contacts. So I'd start with going through the list and marking off ones that can transfer, and then adding more.
However - it could be a good fit if your game is mostly social, political or non-combat. If your Space 1889 is more Rourke's Drift and the Boer War or Crimean War, you'd have to modify it a fair bit.
"This is my timey wimey detector. Goes ding when there's stuff."
Well, I just received my copy of Primeval, and just skimming over the rules it seems this might be a better starting point than Doctor Who. The specialized traits in Primeval are more in line for what I need.