Monmouth to become UK's first 'Wikipedia town'

 

Online encyclopaedia Wikipedia is set to launch a new project aimed at covering every aspect of life in one Welsh town.

Monmouth in south Wales will become the first "Wikipedia town" and the Monmouthpedia will feature all notable places, people, flora and fauna.

Wikipedia has urged people to contribute articles and photographs on as many aspects of life in Monmouth as possible.

Smart phone technology will then allow users to scan barcodes at points of interest and have information about the landmark sent to their mobiles in their own language.

Wikimedia UK, the charity body that promotes Wikipedia and other wiki projects in the UK, has funded the project along with Monmouthshire County Council.

Tomorrow Monmouth Library will host drop-in sessions so people can learn to edit Wikipedia before the signing of the agreement between Monmouthshire County Council and Wikimedia UK to create the world's first Wikipedia town.

Roger Bamkin, a director of Wikimedia UK and co-creator of QRpedia, said: "We're delighted that Monmouth is becoming the world's first Wikipedia town.

"Both the quality and quantity of the new Monmouth Wikipedia content is outstanding, reflecting the rich cultural, historical and natural heritage of the town. At last foreign visitors can not only read information in their own language, but they can edit it too."

Mr Bamkin said the project can be replicated in every town, city or village around the world.

"We've shown in Monmouth that all it takes is a little creativity, energy and cooperation to put a town on the map and take it to an audience of 480 million people a month. Monmouth may be the first Wikipedia town but we're hoping for many, many more to follow. Your town could be next, and we hope it is."

Residents, businesses and volunteers have created hundreds of new articles about Monmouth in 25 different languages, as well as improving hundreds of others.

John Cummings, the local project leader, said: "Wikipedia is all about working to share the sum of all human knowledge with everyone.

"Monmouthpedia has shown that whole towns can make a contribution to this effort. Because QRpedia codes (the barcodes) can be accessed in different languages, they have been used throughout the world. I think that giving free access to information in this way allows us to have a richer experience of the world around us."

Kellie Beirne, Monmouthshire County Council's chief officer for regeneration and culture, said the project had already boosted tourism: "Monmouth has always been known in the UK as a great place to visit and do business.

"We very quickly realised that embracing technology and fantastic global community projects like this benefits everyone in Monmouthshire and we are delighted to be involved in something so innovative, creative and forward-looking."

Wikipedia founder Jimmy Wales said he was looking forward to seeing other towns following suit.

"I'm really excited by the Monmouthpedia project. Bringing a whole town to life on Wikipedia is something new and is a testament to the forward-thinking people of Monmouth, all of the volunteers and the Wikimedia UK team.

"I'm looking forward to seeing other towns and cities doing the same thing."

PA

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
ebooks
ebooksAn introduction to the ground rules of British democracy
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
SPONSORED FEATURES
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: Software / Web Developer - ASP.NET

£35000 - £45000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This company produces a wide ra...

Recruitment Genius: Office / Sales Manager

£22000 - £32000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Established and expanding South...

Recruitment Genius: Administrative Assistant / Order Fulfilment

£14000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: An exciting opportunity to join a thrivi...

SThree: Trainee Recruitment Consultant

£18000 - £23000 per annum + Uncapped OTE: SThree: Trainee Recruitment Consulta...

Day In a Page

Refugee crisis: David Cameron lowered the flag for the dead king of Saudi Arabia - will he do the same honour for little Aylan Kurdi?

Cameron lowered the flag for the dead king of Saudi Arabia...

But will he do the same honour for little Aylan Kurdi, asks Robert Fisk
Our leaders lack courage in this refugee crisis. We are shamed by our European neighbours

Our leaders lack courage in this refugee crisis. We are shamed by our European neighbours

Humanity must be at the heart of politics, says Jeremy Corbyn
Joe Biden's 'tease tour': Could the US Vice-President be testing the water for a presidential run?

Joe Biden's 'tease tour'

Could the US Vice-President be testing the water for a presidential run?
Britain's 24-hour culture: With the 'leisured society' a distant dream we're working longer and less regular hours than ever

Britain's 24-hour culture

With the 'leisured society' a distant dream we're working longer and less regular hours than ever
Diplomacy board game: Treachery is the way to win - which makes it just like the real thing

The addictive nature of Diplomacy

Bullying, betrayal, aggression – it may be just a board game, but the family that plays Diplomacy may never look at each other in the same way again
Lady Chatterley's Lover: Racy underwear for fans of DH Lawrence's equally racy tome

Fashion: Ooh, Lady Chatterley!

Take inspiration from DH Lawrence's racy tome with equally racy underwear
8 best children's clocks

Tick-tock: 8 best children's clocks

Whether you’re teaching them to tell the time or putting the finishing touches to a nursery, there’s a ticker for that
Charlie Austin: Queens Park Rangers striker says ‘If the move is not right, I’m not going’

Charlie Austin: ‘If the move is not right, I’m not going’

After hitting 18 goals in the Premier League last season, the QPR striker was the great non-deal of transfer deadline day. But he says he'd preferred another shot at promotion
Isis profits from destruction of antiquities by selling relics to dealers - and then blowing up the buildings they come from to conceal the evidence of looting

How Isis profits from destruction of antiquities

Robert Fisk on the terrorist group's manipulation of the market to increase the price of artefacts
Labour leadership: Andy Burnham urges Jeremy Corbyn voters to think again in last-minute plea

'If we lose touch we’ll end up with two decades of the Tories'

In an exclusive interview, Andy Burnham urges Jeremy Corbyn voters to think again in last-minute plea
Tunisia fears its Arab Spring could be reversed as the new regime becomes as intolerant of dissent as its predecessor

The Arab Spring reversed

Tunisian protesters fear that a new law will whitewash corrupt businessmen and officials, but they are finding that the new regime is becoming as intolerant of dissent as its predecessor
King Arthur: Legendary figure was real and lived most of his life in Strathclyde, academic claims

Academic claims King Arthur was real - and reveals where he lived

Dr Andrew Breeze says the legendary figure did exist – but was a general, not a king
Who is Oliver Bonas and how has he captured middle-class hearts?

Who is Oliver Bonas?

It's the first high-street store to pay its staff the living wage, and it saw out the recession in style
Earth has 'lost more than half its trees' since humans first started cutting them down

Axe-wielding Man fells half the world’s trees – leaving us just 422 each

However, the number of trees may be eight times higher than previously thought
60 years of Scalextric: Model cars are now stuffed with as much tech as real ones

60 years of Scalextric

Model cars are now stuffed with as much tech as real ones