Last year we posted about our plans to make sure that the Signpost meets the requirements of the Government’s accessibility targets for public sector web sites. (you can read that post here: Access to the Signpost).
Since then we have been implementing a number of measures to improve the site.
As we get closer to the deadlines for meeting the targets we would like to get the views of any local residents that have accessibility needs and have experienced dificulty in finding the information they want on the Signpost.
If you have had problems, why not drop a line to us, saying what has been dificult for you and we will try to make sure that we address issues like yours in the future development of the site.
Back in 2013, not long after the inital launch of the Signpost, we included this postwhich described how the BBC had put some of the results of their “Digital Domesday” project online. The original project brought together a description of the UK in 1985-86 with contributions from a wide range of people, including schoolchildren.
A BBC Micro Computer and video disk player used to present the Domesday material (National Archive of Educational Computing)
The material is no longer available at the BBC web site and can only be accessed through Internet archives (such as The Wayback Machine) or through the Government’s National Digital Archive.
Because the material provides a fascinating snapshot of life in the village in 1985, we are republishing the text here. It’s intriguing to explore the things that have changed (and the ones that have stayed the same) in the intervening 35 years. One small point – the village was pleased at the time that the old railway bank was to be given over to forestry; 35 years later this is now in village ownership as the Great Central Woodland.
So here is the text of the material provided in relation to Woodford Halse with a few notes onthe project from myself. If you know who provided this text (I am guessing the school was heavily involved but the BBC material has no attribution) or want to add comments below, we would love to hear.
During the present Corona Virus outbreak there will be information available from many different sources. At last night’s Parish Council meeting it was agreed that news posts here on on the Signpost will focus on only those issues of immediate local concern to the village (for example, today’s post concerning the Byfield Surgery).
We will, of course, also carry any information that local government channels such as Daventry District Council and the County Council, ask us to publicise.
Thanks to John Rose who pointed out a problem on the site.
Apparently the Village News Details page – the one that lists out all the news posts with their content – had stopped working. Unfortunately I couldn’t figure out what was wrong with it. Maybe it is just that there are so many posts now on the site – over 2000 – that the WordPress page coding couldn’t cope with it???
Anyway, I’ve solved it by replacing that page with another that only posts ten news items per page with links at the bottom of the page to skip forwards or backwards for more. Hopefully that will stop the problem recurring and you will still be able to browse through news items as you want.
So now you can find detailed of news items on this page: News Details. It’s available under the Village News menu item at the top of the page.
One problem. It’s not working perfectly – the “Like This” buttons are duplicated and the “Share This” buttons omitted. I will try to fix that in the coming days.
Village News provides an alternative way to get to posts. It lists the titles and date posted of each item, with a link to the whole item with 40 posts per page.
At last night’s February Parish Council Meeting, the Council was asked to update residents on the progress of the Byfield Medical Centre planning application.
The planning application will be decided on by Daventry District Council, Woodford |Parish Council can only comment on the application and has done so, supporting it. However recognising that Woodford residents have concerns over this, the Council has asked the Signpost to publish all the relevant information and provide as much information as possible.
What We Have Done.
We have added a page to the Signpost entitled Medical Centre Updates. This collects up all the posts related to the medical Centre’s planning application and will also carries a link to the Byfield Medical Centre’s own planning application page (now live): Planning Application Page.
You can find this new page via the menu at the top of the page…..
As mentioned on page 3 ofthe 2019 annual web site report, we need to make changes to the Village Signpost in order to make sure that it continues to be accessible on mobile devices such as phones and tablets as well as on desktop computers and laptops.
We have to complete these changes before the end of March and we are going to try to sort this out over the coming few days.
This should not interfere with the availability of the web site but it will mean that the way the web site looks will be different. There may be a few changes over the coming days as we try a number of options in order to make sure that the contents of the current site is still easily accessible.
We will post again when the work is complete but in the mean time, we hope that the work we are doing will not cause any problems.
As well as summarising what has gone on over the last year (a record number of page views once again but with slower growth than before) it also highlights the work that is planned for the web site over the coming twelve months.
Don’t forget, the editor is always pleased to hear of things that could be added, improved or corrected in order to make the Signpost more useful.
I’ve just noticed that the menu system at the top of the page had become completely mucked up. I’m not sure how long it has been like that but it was probably back to when I added the “Xmas 2019” entry to the menu last week.
So, firstly, apologies for any confusion.
Secondly its fixed (or should be) now.
Also, I’ve updated the “short history of the village” which is available in either an A4 format or A5 format (for those with better eye sight and less paper in their printers). This is also available via the village history page.
Back in May we published this postdiscussing the work we plan to do in order that this web site meets Web Site Accessibility Regulations.
We have installed a tool to help monitor the site and highlight areas that need to be corrected and so you may see changes as the parts of the site that do not comply with the standard are updated. Many of these changes may be hardly noticeable to most users but the changes will make it easier for all users to access what we hope is useful local information.
We just spotted these walks on a Facebook page and decided to share them here on the Woodford Walks page, for those that don’t use Facebook……
Bill Reid, who was a fireman and used to work coal trains too and from Woodford via Oxford and Banbury in the latter couple of years up to closure, has created a page with walks around Woodford’s railway past. You can find them here: Woodford Halse Railway Walks.
The pages include current and old photographs of the areas walked.
Well, that turned out to be easier than I expected. Thanks to 1&1IONOS who look after the servers that the Signpost runs on, we now have a bright and shiny SSL security certificate.
Having installed it on the site, the site now shows as being secured (see the padlock symbol circled in red in the image below). This means any data sent between your browser and the Signpost (and vice versa) cannot be read by anyone else while it being transmitted.
This should not cause any problems for users of the site. If you have any difficulties that you think maybe the result of this change please email the editor: email@example.com.
You may have noticed that your browser shows the Village Signpost as “not secure”.
In the address line of your browser you may see an “!”. Different browsers may show this differently, especially if you access the site from a mobile device.
Do not worry. The Village Signpost is safe to use.
Why Does This Happen?
You receive this warning because the Village Signpost web site does not use a Security “SSL” Certificate. Sites with a security certificate encrypt the data between the site and your browser making them safer to use for applications like shopping or ticket booking. You can recognise such sites by the padlock symbol that appears in your browser address line and by their use of https:// as the first part of their address (the “s” stands for secure).
You need not be worried but we want to make sure that everyone has confidence in the security of the site.
What Are We Doing About It?
We are planning to introduce an SSL Certificate on the site shortly. This should not affect your use of the site.
(Thanks to Patricia Darby for drawing our attention to this problem. We are always happy to hear of any difficulties that you are having with the Signpost. You can contact us here: firstname.lastname@example.org)
For some unfathomable reason our automatic feed to Twitter went off-line a while back and we’ve only just noticed it. It has now been fixed.
Not being big Twitter users here, mostly we think tweeting is what the birds on the bird table in the garden do (well, not the jackdaws, obviously…). However, for those that DO use Twitter you should be able to get a notification every time that we update the Signpost (new posts and updates to pages) by following us on Twitter:
This email address does not exist and the mail does not come from the Signpost (email notifications from the Signpost are sent from email@example.com and communications from the editor are sent out from the editor’s gmail account).
The email asks you to click on a Dropbox link. Do not click on the link. It may allow a virus to infect your computer.
New regulations are being introduced to make sure that public sector web sites can be accessed by all, irrespective of ability.
The Parish Council’s Village Signpost web site, along with all other existing public sector web sites, must meet The Public Sector Bodies (Websites and Mobile Applications) (No.2) Accessibility Regulations 2018 by 23rd September 2020. This means the web site must follow the Web Content Accessibility Guideline (WCAG) standard (currently 2.0, soon to be 2.1)
We will be working to make sure that the Signpost meets these standards.
How Will This Affect The Signpost?
You may see changes as we try to make sure that the content on the Signpost meets the required standards over the coming year. Likely changes are:-
alterations to the layout of some information on the pages.
increased use of headings.
changes in the ways that menus work or new pages open.
changes in the ways that images are captioned.
the inclusion of an accessibility statement.
These changes should improve access for everyone by making the site easier to use, whether or not the user has a disability.
Please Bear With Us!
Firstly, the Signpost’s editor doesn’t have much experience of working with the proposed standard yet but we hope that by starting early we can make sure we meet the regulations by the deadline.
Secondly, the website contains much information that is no longer current (over 1800 posts have been added to the Signpost since we started it) and much of this is rarely accessed. There is an argument for retaining this material as part of the village’s (more recent) history, but equally, it may need a great deal of effort to ensure it complies with the standards. We are using tools that will help reduce the problem but we have yet to decide how this information will be treated in the long term.
This email address does not exist and the mail does not come from the Signpost (email notifications from the Signpost are sent from firstname.lastname@example.org and communications from the editor are sent out from the editor’s gmail account).
The email asks you to click on a Dropbox link. This may allow a virus to infect your computer.
There’s a collection of the walks that were originally published in the WOW in 2014, plus a walk around our railway heritage and some other suggestions too, including walks in other parts of Daventry district and details of the Jurassic Way, the long distance footpath, that runs through the parish.
If this weather continues there will be no excuse for staying indoors!
Rooting through my emails I came across this Google Earth screen shot that was sent to me by the Great Central Railway Enthusiasts Association. I’m not sure why I didn’t share it at the time but I’m happy to now and to add another to join it on the “Woodford & the Railway” page in the Woodford History part of the Signpost.
It shows where all the various installations associated with the railway were and just what an impact the railway made on our village. Many thanks to John Rose and the Association.
The Hallmaster booking system, that we use to manage bookings for the village halls, has recently been upgraded.
You should not notice any significant changes except that there is a now a slider on the diary page that will let you make the text larger or smaller. Using this you can set the slider to see the diary a week to one page or to have it easier to read but needing you to scroll the screen.
We’ve updated the Woodford cum Membris Business Directory, our list of local firms. This is the January 2019 edition. Entry in the directory is free to local businesses. Inclusion in the directory does not imply that the business is in any way approved by the Parish Council.
This site is managed according to Editorial Guidelines agreed by the Council. These guidelines conform to the Code of Recommended Practice on Local Authority Publicity. You can find out more and read copies of all previous reports on the “About this Site” page.
Want to make sure you always stay up to date with the latest news about what’s going on in Woodford?
Don’t forget you can get an email each time we publish a new post by simply subscribing.
First, fill in the “subscribe” field on the right or on opens in a new windowfront pageof our site and click “subscribe”. Then click “Confirm Follow” in the email that you will receive.
Look! We’re experimenting with the look of this web site by changing the width of pages here on the Signpost. (We know the pictures at the top of the page don’t look right but if we decide to stick with this we will fix that)
We think a wider page will be more readable but we’d like to get your views.
Please help us by answering one question on this survey:-
At their July meeting, the Parish Council decided to go ahead with changes to the Council’s technology support. This involves:
installing wifi and internet access in the Memorial Hall
providing Councillors with email addresses for parish council business
publishing an internet web address specific to the council
Parish email addresses will avoid the risk of parish business becoming caught up with personal emails and are intended to make it easier for local residents to contact Councillors.
There will be news of the wifi facility once it is installed but other changes start to come in at once.
The Parish Council now has its own web address, separate from the Signpost, www.woodfordcummembris-pc.org. This is already available and points directly to the main Parish Council page on the Village Signpost. You can still reach this page by clicking on “Parish Council” in the menu bar at the top of this page.
Thanks to all those subscribers to the Signpost that asked for us to continue emailing them with details of posts.
We are sorry but all other subscribers have now been removed from the list in line with the GDPR regulations that come in on 25th May.
If you didn’t know that you can get an email every time we update the Signpost and you want to, then simply add your email address, where it says “Subscribe” on the right hand side of the Signpost’s home page.
Each year the Parish Council re-considers roles such as the Chair and Vice-Chair and other roles held by Councillors. The Parish Council “Who Does What” page has been updated with details of new roles following the first meeting of the Council’s new year, and the District Council election.
In addition, you may have noticed in your emails that there is a new standard in data protection coming in on the 25th May. Under the General Data Protection Regulations, the Parish Council, in common with all public bodies, has to appoint a Data Protection Officer. To minimise the costs of this to the Parish, the Council has chosen to use a shared service with other Councils and has appointed Northamptonshire County Association of Local Councils (NCALC) as our Data Protection Officer. You should contact email@example.com in the first instance if you have any concerns about data protection and this site but NCALC can be contacted as follows:-
Following a majority vote in favour at the referendum held on Thursday 3rd May 2018, Daventry District Council formally made the plan on Friday 4th May 2018 in accordance with the decision of its Full Council on 8th March 2018. The plan now forms part of the Statutory Development Plan and will be used when determining planning applications in the Woodford cum Membris Neighbourhood Area.
A copy of the Woodford cum Membris Neighbourhood Plan, together with the Notice of Making of Plan, and a statement setting out the Council’s decision to make the plan and the reasons for that decision, can be viewed on the Council’s website at: www.daventrydc.gov.uk/madeneighbourhoodplans
Hard copies of the documents are also available for inspection at the following places and times;
Daventry District Council Offices (Lodge Road, Daventry, NN11 4FP)
o Monday to Thursday 8.30 – 17.00, Friday 8.30 – 16.30
You may know that new legislation comes into force at the end of this month governing the privacy of personal data and the ways in which it is used.
We have emailed to all those that have registered to receive updates asking if they are happy for us to continue to use their data for this purpose.
We will also be contacting all those whose details appear in our on-line directories to check that they still wish to be included.
Some local groups have their own web sites and we are happy to link to those. For other groups, we can host a page here on the Signpost with more details than can be shown in the listing on the local directory pages. This can also work if your society has its own internet address.
The latest group to take advantage of this is the Woodford Halse History Society who have a new page here. This includes their current and past programmes, contacts and details of membership. The society page can also be reached directly at their own internet address www.woodfordhalsehistorysociety.org.
It was also agreed that we should publish the details of the PCSO’s powers. These can be found here: PCSO Powers.
We’ve also taken this opportunity to restructure the part of the Signpost that deals with Local Policing (you can reach it under the Parish Council menu). The Local Policing page contains Carl’s contact details and other useful crime and police related information. There are now separate pages for our PCSO’s twitter feed and for PCSO Monthly Reports and for PCSO Powers.
Because of the number of posts going up on the Signpost it can be easy to miss something and we can only show as small number of news posts listed on the front page. The old “Village News” page showed all the posts but it was difficult to scroll through them to find what you wanted.
We have changed the Village News page so that now it just shows the date of posting and the title of the news item. There are fifty posts on a page, so you shouldn’t have to scroll so much to find what you want. Just click on the links and the news item is displayed. (We know this looks a bit crowded at the moment but we will try to make it easier to read)
The old “Village News ” page is still available too. You can find it here or you can find it from the menu under “Village News” as “Village News Details”.
Sorry if you have missed your regular dose of local news and information but now we are back.
Needless to say, the in-box is full. It will take us a few days to get all of the things we have online. So, check back every so often over the next few days in order to make sure that you don’t miss anything.
The forthcoming Neighbourhood Development Plan Referendum (see the post here) places strict limits on what the Parish Council can or cannot say during the referendum period.
Under Local Government guidelines, the Parish Council is not allowed to campaign either for or against the Plan. It can only provide factual information and advise people that they should vote in the referendum. The guidelines also restrict what Parish Council web sites may and may not publish. This includes sites that include the comments of other people.
For this reason, I am afraid that we have had to disable the comments facility on the Signpost and on the Signpost Facebook page. We have also turned off the automated feed linking the Signpost with Twitter.
These facilities will be reinstated on May 4th after the referendum.
The Woodford Halse Community page and other Woodford-related Facebook pages not published by the Parish Council are, of course, not affected by this.
Information on the rules governing any campaigning by groups in favour or against the plan will be published together with the formal announcement of the referendum.
… to anyone that had problems accessing the Signpost this lunch time. We were off the air for over an hour due to problems with the servers that host our web site. These seem now to have been sorted out, although our hosting provider says that there may still be further outages.
We have also been able to adapt the Roadworks.org map of local traffic and planned roadworks. This has been added to the page Local Roadworks. (Please read the details on the page which explain how to get the most from this map.)
The page can be accessed via the Local Transport page under the Local Directory page or via the menu bar at the top of the page under Local Directory.
Thanks to everyone that has responded so far but we want to give everyone a last chance to let us have their views. Feedback helps us to ensure the Village Signpost stays relevant to the needs of the village.
We know that not everyone uses the Internet but for those that do, we want the Signpost to be as useful as it can be.
You have always been able to add your comments to any of the posts on the Signpost by simply filling in the form at the bottom of the page in question where it says… “Tell Us What You Think…” . (Please do – we like to have feed back and where it relates to parish Council issues it certainly gets sent on!)
If your comment is likely to be of interest to everyone, it will usually be approved and appear at the bottom of the page in question. If it’s just a “you got this wrong….” I’ll just try to fix it and let you know.
Now we have added on the front page a list of the most recent comments so you can see new suggestions and thoughts from readers of the site. Look for it on the right, just under “Latest News” and “Follow Us”.
We publish the agenda and the minutes of every Parish Council meeting and meetings of Council sub-committees, such as the Great Central Woods Management Committee, the SARA Field Committee and the PCSO Liaison Committee.
These agendas and minutes are published as soon as possible after approval.
In order to make the publishing of these more efficient (actually to make it easier for the editor!) we have changed the way that the Minutes and Agenda pages are displayed.
We’ve updated the pages on Woodford Walks with details of how long each of the walks should take and some changes to take account of the fact that the bridleway and bridge over the Cherwell between West Farndon and Eydon via Butterfly Lane is now open.
Last year the Parish Council spent £140,000 on local services and amenities. Details of income and expenditure are shown each month in the minutes of the Parish Council meetings ( opens in a new windowavailable here) but we have now added a new page to the site which makes available the annual budget and the most recent financial statement of accounts.
Central Woods is the area of land purchased by the Parish Council in 2016 for the benefit of the community.
A Management Committee is being established to consider all matters relating to the land, reporting to the Parish Council. The committee will meet regulalry. Parish Council has nominated five members and has asked for a further five non-councillor members to be invovled.
The first meeting, which will involve nominated Parish Councillors and a number of residents that have expressed an interest in being involved, will take place on 26th January.
If you asked to have your email address added to our list of subscribers in the recent web site survey you should have received an email asking you to authorise the subscription. Please click on it to make sure you get an email every time we add a post.
If you want to add your own email address you can do so by entering it here and clicking subscribe where its shown by the red arrow right….
Our web site survey is now closed. Thank you to every one that responded. We’ll report on the findings shortly. If you asked to be added to the automatic distribution of posts to your email we’ll sort that in the next few days.
In 2015 pages on the Signpost were visited just over 50,000 times! Thanks for dropping by.
The link to the Woodford Halse School web page was broken (it had changed from the original site) and the download link on the Business Directory page was broken too (probably finger trouble on my part).
These have now been fixed.
Plus. the report provided to Council at the end of last year regarding the web site had not been added here. This is now corrected. You can see it (and all previous reports) here…. opens in a new window About This Web Site.
The Francis Frith Collection offers a number of pictures of old Woodford Halse as part of their archive. We’ve added a link to the pictures on the Village History Pictures page or you can get their directly from here…. opens in a new windowFrancis Frith Collection. Pictures can be viewed for free and you can order prints with or without frames from Fancis Frith.
(Thanks to Lucy Allen on Facebook for posting these originally.)
Not far from here, at Edgcote, in July 1469, a battle between the forces of the Earl of Pembroke and those loyal to the Earl of Warwick took place. Pembroke lost allowing Edward IV to be taken into “protection” by Warwick. You can find out more about the fight and how to opens in a new windowvisit the battlefield here.
Shedmaster of Woodford Depot (centre) and one of his charges: GCR 4-4-0 locomotive #867
Woodford Station Master’s House with Mr Coulson and his wife.
The junction of the GCR and the E&WJ (later to become S&MJ) railways circa 1897.
Woodford “old yard” looking south across the Byfield Road, circa 1900.
Woodford Halse Motive Power Depot, circa 1900
Locomotive #852 at Woodford Shed circa 1900.
Photographs marked (c) Leicester County Council are sourced from opens in a new windowImage Leicestershireand are used with permission. More details can be found by entering the picture number, “Lnnnn”, on their search facility. Photographs on this page are copyright as identified and can only be downloaded for personal use.
This web site is run on behalf of the Parish Council but the web site editor is not a member of Council. For that reason, and so that all our readers can understand the way in which the web site is run the Parish Council has agreed a set of guidelines for the web site.
In the interests of openness, those guidelines are published here and are also available via the About This Sitepage.
There were over 9600 web site visits in the six months July to December viewing over 21,000 pages.
The Signpost web site is still ranked #2 (after our Wikipedia entry) on searches for “Woodford Halse” on Google, Google search is still how most people find us.
We have 208 Facebook “Likes” (up from 164 in June) – these people get all our updates on their Facebook feed automatically.
144 news items were put on the site between July and December.
We still need to improve interaction with the community with more groups contributing material to the web site.
Most users access the site through mobile phones or tablets (53% of users with these compared with 47% using a laptop or desktop computer). The design of the site is a compromise layout intended to work reasonably on both types of device.
The three most popular pages were Village News, Parish Council Minutes and WOW.
The three most popular news items were Northampton’s sale of the Egyptian statue, Harley Equestrian’s new shop & cafe, and Fawsley Hall Jobs.
You can find the details here or download the Hire Agreement here.
Full payment is required immediately upon signing the Hire Agreement in order to reserve the period(s) required. A signed copy of the Hire Agreement has to be completed and delivered to the Booking Clerk with payment.
We’ve made a couple of changes to the “ opens in a new windowStories of our Streets” page to include Manor Road, Manor Close and Jubilee Gardens omitted previously (apologies to residents!) and to correct a couple of typos.
Also the local history sessions are continuing in the Library for another two Sundays for anyone that wants to go along.
On 8th February at 2:00pm the topic will be Hinton.
On 15th February at 2:00pm there will be a visit to the Social Club to see the model railway showing Woodford in its heyday. Numbers are limited for this so please call Maureen on 01327 262939 if you are interested.
A recent collection of postings on Facebook was looking at the reasons why the Parish’s streets have the names that they do.
We’ve collected up a number of different pieces of information on each of the roads and paths around the village and together they tell a fascinating tale, reflecting much of the history of the parish.
Why not have a look and see what is known about your street?
The video shows trains working around Woodford in the British Railways era, referencing the GC (Great Central), SMJ (Stratford & Midland Junction) and GWR (Great Western Railway) workings. Skip forward to 0:39 for the start of the video:
We’ve added a new page to the web site showing which Parish Councillors are involved in the business groups that look after each area of Parish Council business. You can use this list to find out who is best to help with any particular problem you may have.
More and more government services are available on-line and that includes services from your district and county council.
Northamptonshire County Council recently sent us details of their Click It campaign and we’ve used them to set up a page for the County on this web site, listing the services you can find on-line and linking to them. We’ve also added details for similar services available from Daventry District Council. These are all in the new Local Government section of the opens in a new windowVillage Directory.
We hope to be adding more details about the Parish Council’s work in future updates too.
Here’s what Northants County Council had to say…..
There are an increasing number of services available via the county council website www.northamptonshire.gov.uk, including applying for a school place, paying a parking fine and renewing a bus pass.
People can also go online to order their child’s school meals, register for a blue badge parking permit and check their eligibility for free childcare for under twos. The county council’s Can You Click It? campaign aims to drive more people to the website for commonly-used services rather than phoning the customer service centre.
In the post on the Neighbourhood Plan posted on June 13th we made a mistake in Bob Snedker’s email address. The link was correct but the text was wrong and so if you sent an email to Bob using that address and haven’t had a response please check to see if you have the correct address which is:-
We are trying a new way of publishing documents on the site. Some of you may have noticed that the latest WOW is available as a downloadable document as usual or as a “flip book” that you can read on-line. Now we’ve added a Flip Book Bookcase where commonly read documents will also be available.
You can get to it from our top menu via Local Directory : On-Line Library or directly here: Bookcase.
Access is from the footpath off the north-western end of Elm Drive not far from Chestnut Close or from the western end of Willow Close . You can find the park here on the opens in a new windowvillage map. If you zoom in on the satellite view you can actually see some of the play park equipment!
If your kids haven’t been down there I can recommend it. The grandchildren particularly enjoyed the climbing wall and the swings.
Each six months we do a report on the Village Web site for the Parish Council and we have just produced one for the six months from January to June 2014 for the September meeting of the Parish Council.
Since it might be of wider interest we are happy to publish it here.
opens in a new windowIn this month’s WOW there was the first of a series of local walks in the countryside around Woodford. Joe Pitt, our Footpath Warden has provided a short description of the walk and there’s a simple guide map too. For the web site we’ve added links to other information of interest.
We hope to publish more soon so you can get the most out of the wonderful countryside we live in.
Next up in December, retired blacksmith Martin Rowling will talk about designing and building the unique Culworth Jubilee clock.
The Society meets each month from September to May to hear about some aspect of local history.
Don’t forget that anyone can turn up for these talks for just £2.50 a meeting or, if you are interested in local history then you can support the Society by joining for £10.00 a year and attend the meetings for free.
PLUS : the Comittee is looking for extra support & new ideas for speakers. Contact Julie Williams or Phil Bainbridge on 01327 262371.
As part of looking around the web for interesting things to do with Woodford, I came across the BBC’s Digital Domesday entry for Woodford Halse.
Do you remember this project to document every area of the UK on “laser disks”? If you were involved in contributing to the Woodford entry, maybe you never got to see what you provided (the computers and disk players were too expensive for many schools).
Some things are relatively easy to do. Ideas such as “Quick Contacts” for essential telephone numbers and a better guide to local planning can easily be done and we will try to put those in place as quickly as we can.
Other things that would be useful such as dedicated pages for local societies could be done if the societies want to put forward someone to maintain the area in question (we can easily make access available to parts of the site to allow this).
Generally we don’t want to reproduce things that people are doing in other ways (e.g. the Old Pictures of Woodford or the Things for Sale Facebook pages) and there are many things that Twitter and Facebook are much better for.
Some of things that people felt were unimportant we will either not put any further effort into or remove if we find it helps to make the rest of the site more useful.
BUT we do want to be a place where people can find the local information they need easily, so we will be looking at implementing as many of the ideas suggested as we can, given the resources available to us.
Thanks to all those that took part in our web site survey.
We’ll be analysing the results from the survey and putting those together with data from the actual use that people make of the site.
Then we can see what that all means for future developments. Watch out for news in a week or two. We plan to summarise the results and set out some sort of road map for future work, although everything depends on time and skills available.
Village Signpost Wins Northants Award of Excellence!
Avid readers of our site will know that our new web site was made possible by the initiative of Northants ACRE in running training and organising an on-line forum and discussion sessions to help the development of new community web sites. As part of this, ACRE has been running a competition to find the best Northamptonshire parish web site in various categories and we are among the winners!
Woodford Halse Village Signpost won the “Website with most on-line engagement” category and came third in the “Best Overall Website” (Geddington was the overall winner).
Our prize was an activity session for up to 16 young people at the Frontier Centre. The Parish Council is deciding how to organise this. Since part of the criteria for this award was the number of clicks through from Facebook and other media, everyone who has visited the site has helped us to win and has helped to make it possible for some Woodford young folk to have a great day out. Thanks everyone!
1. We’ve added some useful links to the opens in a new windowlocal history page about English Heritage’s list of local historic sites, details of the village census from 1851 to 1951 and Woodford’s listed buildings.
2. Many thanks to all those that have responded to opens in a new windowour survey about the web site. We’ve had some very interesting feedback and some excellent suggestions about things you’d like to see. There’s still time to give your views : we’ll be keeping it open and promoting it in the next issue of WoW so that people who don’t necessarily know the site yet get a chance too. If you’ve got friends that haven’t responded ask them to let us have their views.
We’ve added a new page to provide links to the range of support groups that help those with health issues and their carers. If you know others that you think we should add, please send the details to: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Northants ACRE (Action with Communities in Rural England) hosted a second evening for village web site authors as part of their programme to promote local web sites in rural areas.
We went along to see what tips we could pick up and hopefully you’ll see the results over the coming weeks and months.
One thing you will see soon is a banner about our cookies policy which we have to include to comply with EU law and the regulations of the UK Information Commissioner (the e-Privacy Directive). More news on this soon.
We are always pleased for anyone to make comments on our pages but we have been suffering from a lot of spam comments and there is only so much time I can spend editing it out!
To help stop spam we’ve added a “CAPTCHA” question to the comments form at the bottom of each page. It asks you to solve a simple problem and provide the answer just to prove you’re not an automated spam machine. We’re sorry if this makes it a little more awkward to post. Let us know if it is really a problem by sending an email.
Northamptonshire ACRE (Action with Communities in Rural England) are the organisation running the Community Web Site program that we are part of. Last night they ran a session to allow those involved to meet up and hear how the project is going. June Irani and John Williams went along to Hunsbury Centre for the meeting.
The evening was attended by nearly 40 people from all over the county. We did wonder if there was going to be enough room but everyone managed to get a seat. Elaine O’Leary from ACRE managed the evening and was kept busy meeting, greeting and introducing the various speakers. Steve McCarthy – who developed the Rothersthorpe site – introduced the session with a history of the project and the progress to date. There were presentations on work done by Walgrave, Wilby and Milton Malsor and we got some ideas on things we might do to further develop this site. (Your suggestions very much welcomed too!)
There was also an update on the county-wide web site competition that we have entered.
We’d love to see it and to add it to our web site gallery here. Photos can be of any aspect of Woodford life. All we ask is that they are taken inside the parish boundary around Woodford Halse, Hinton and West Farndon.
There are prizes for two groups; under 16 and 16 and above. The winners will be the pictures considered by the judges to be the best representation of Woodford and life in the village.
Entrants retain the copyright of these pictures but in entering the competition you allow the Parish Council to use your photograph on this web site. Photographs used on the web site will be credited to the entrant. Photographs must be the entrant’s own work and can be colour or black and white, original or “photoshopped”. Pictures must be submitted in a digital format (.JPG or .PNG preferred) and no larger than 5M bytes. Entrants can submit up to three pictures.
To enter, send an email with your photo(s) attached to: email@example.com. Please put “Life in Woodford Photo Competition” in the subject line, add a title for each of your pictures and let us know if you are under 16.
Closing date for entries will be 5:00p.m. on Wednesday 31st of July, so you can wait for some sunshine (Fingers crossed!). The competition will be judged by members of the Parish Council. Winners will be notified by Friday 30th August. We’ll announce the prizes here soon.
Please note that the old Woodford Halse web site is no longer being used for Parish Notices or for the WoW.
This means that only comments on this site and this email address –firstname.lastname@example.org– are monitored by the Parish Council and the WoW editors. Please do not use the WhatsOn@ or WOW@ email addresses after this time as we will not be able to respond to them.
The old Parish Council minutes, agendas and editions of WoW published on-line at www.woodfordhalse.co.uk will not be available after 30th April and at present we do not intend to reload them here. Minutes of Parish Council meetings for and after October 2012 are available here. Minutes of earlier meeting continue to be available at the Library.
It’s not perfect and there’s room for improvement but special thanks to Northampton ACRE for supporting the community web sites scheme and Northampton Library for providing our training, I am not a techy but we have learnt a lot along the way. Extra special thanks to our helpers John Williams and Lynda Jones who have put a lot of hours into gathering information and putting the site together but we do need your help to fill the gaps so if there is something obvious that we have missed we will be pleased to hear from you.
Thanks must also go to David Curtis for the original village web site and the hours that he had put in to maintaining the site, we know from putting this one together it takes time!
We will be launching a photographic competition during April with more details to follow.