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::::: Well I have to disagree and most of the people saying that the uk is not gay friendly, can not back it up. And Edinburgh is likley the most gay friendly city in the whole of the UK and that is a fact. The only city that it may attract some comments is Glasgow.
 
::::: Well I have to disagree and most of the people saying that the uk is not gay friendly, can not back it up. And Edinburgh is likley the most gay friendly city in the whole of the UK and that is a fact. The only city that it may attract some comments is Glasgow.
 
==CIA Data==
 
So, I stripped out the CIA World Factbook 2002 import data for the UK, and moved it to [[Talk:United Kingdom/CIA World Factbook 2002 import]]. If you need it for reference, it's there. -- [[User:Evan|Evan]] 10:16, 3 Dec 2003 (PST)
 
  
 
==Ferries==
 
==Ferries==

Revision as of 00:34, 11 May 2010

Contents

Trim this page

This discussion page is too long. Its not even is proper chronological order, and most of the stuff is very old. Anyone object to all pre-2005 stuff being deleted (Inclusive?) 81.105.110.59 21:01, 13 July 2008 (EDT)

Legal tender

I'm about to remove all references to "legal tender" from this document because they're misleading. The UK doesn't have much in the way of legal tender laws. The rules that do exist tend to be obsolete (e.g. it's great that I can pay with notes up to £1, except no-one uses those). Since this article is supposed to be helpful for visitors I will just point out that shopkeepers aren't obliged to accept anything (legal tender applies to debts, not going shopping) and mention the common limitations like not using £50 notes in a corner shop. tialaramex 07:29, 6 August 2007 (EDT)

Homosexuality

Have to take issue with "(Note: homosexual displays of affection may be greeted with intolerance, disgust or even individuals' protests in general public, and around children. It is more appropriate in gay-friendly areas, however). "

Whilst that may be true in some rural areas, I think the UK is one of the most tolerant countries in the world in respect of homosexuality - vastly more so than America or many European countries, perhaps due to the lack of religiousity in the country. Seems a perculiar argument. Have removed the comment, as there is no evidence for this whatsoever.

I disagree, the point should stay in the main text. It is not just "rural" areas that will have objections. There is only central Manchester and London where people are more likely to be tolerant. In Birmingham, Glasgow, Newcastle, Leeds, Edinburgh and Liverpool, it is very likely to attract threatening and abusive behaviour (especially under the above listed conditions). As unfortunate as it may be, not all of the UK are as tolerant or accepting as London is. I think it was perhaps a mistake to remove this, and it should at least be noted, even if in a simplified form. I'll put it back in the article until more opinions form (people who know the general UK mind set) are obtained. (That was not a dig at the previous person's opinion).
I've got to ask, on what are you basing your assertions? Do you have personal experiences that could shed light on the issue? Have you read reports that back your belief that gays are likely to be treated with hostility in Birmingham, Leeds, Edinburgh and so on? Because I've got to be honest that neither my own experience living in Birmingham, nor those of my gay friends in various parts of the country, nor any of the gay-specific travel guides I've read gel with this. --Paul. 23:05, 7 November 2006 (EST)
This is based mainly on my own experiences with (and the experiences of) friends. I did include a point about gay-friendly areas which is where your friends may have been at the time. I mean wandering the streets sight seeing you are unlikely to engage in acts of affections, whether gay or straight. Maybe the inclusion of Birmingham wasn't totally accurate, as it is more metropolitan than the other cities I named; but the point is still valid: get away from the gay-friendly areas of these towns and cities and there is a hightened "risk" of threatening, heckling and abusive behaviour. I have found this to be true escpecially in the northern cities (except Manchester) and Scottish cities (i.e. not so metropolitanised cities). Gay-specific travel guides (as any travel guides) aren't exactly known for their accurate perception of peoples' attitudes. I don't mean it as a stay away tool or criticism or what not - I only meant it to be a simple caution and/or observation; and of course as a friendly point.
I do agree that not all of the UK is gay friendly, including many parts of many major cities. However, the experience of my gay friends in Leeds is that they feel perfectly safe in public in the city centre (though this cannot extend to all areas of the city) which is very gay friendly and style-orientated. The city is very cosmopolitan/metropolitan and accepting for the most part and intolerance in the city centre (esp. obv the gay area) is almost unheard of. I can't speak for other cities as i don't know gay people living there, but i doubt leeds is alone in this (obv u have already listed London, Mcr, Bham as gay friendly but im sure there are other places)
Im fairly certain youre not thinking of the same Leeds city centre as I am?! Almost eery time I see someone who is clearly gay with another man (Yep this only applies to the men/men couples) I hear some kind of abuse. Its not usually violent, true... I dont have any Gay friends but while gay men are accepted into some clubs (Mission esspec. has a gay night) in the early hours Im sure they get their fair share of abuse. 81.105.110.59 21:01, 13 July 2008 (EDT)
I live in Manchester ,am gay and often go out in city centre Leeds with gay and non gay friends. It is by no means a threatening city centre. There is a great gay/straight dance club scene in the city and it is also a very stylish place. I prefer it to Manchester which IS more metropolitan but,lately, The Village is full of groups of straight women on hen nights and others who come to see the gays in their natural environment! With my "old man" hat on ,I would say Leeds is old money and more european, whilst Manchester is new money and a bit more americanised and hence has a bit of an edge to it.
Well I have to disagree and most of the people saying that the uk is not gay friendly, can not back it up. And Edinburgh is likley the most gay friendly city in the whole of the UK and that is a fact. The only city that it may attract some comments is Glasgow.

Ferries

How best to organise the ferry info I wonder? Sort first by English port? Or perhaps by foreign country? Matthewmayer 17:10, 27 Dec 2003 (PST)

My first impulse is to list them clockwise by the port on Great Britain, but there's one connecting Dublin to Douglas and another one connecting Dublin to Cherbourg, so that won't work. -phma 22:00, 27 Dec 2003 (PST)
Dublin/Cherbourg wouldn't be listed (Ireland/France) and I'd probably put tbe Douglas ferry just in the Isle of Man section. I'm tending towards the 'list by foreign country' method. eg, if I'm in Scandinavia, which ferries will get me to the UK. Matthewmayer 03:48, 28 Dec 2003 (PST)
I wonder if we really need ferry information at this level of detail on the country page. Would it be better to have general information -- name of major ports and major places ferries come from -- with more detailed information on the individual city pages? --Evan 23:36, 3 Jan 2004 (EST)
I think the country pages risk becoming too generic if we don't put any 'hard' information on them. We can have another level of information (approximate ticket costs, location of port) on the city page. But I don't believe that most people sailing to Harwich, for example, are planning on visiting Harwich. They shouldn't have to print out a page about Harwich nightlife and local attractions, in order to find out basic information about ferry services there. Matthewmayer 07:23, 4 Jan 2004 (EST)
So, say, if I want to go to Manchester, and I need info on the country as a whole, I also need to print out ferry schedules from Bergen to Harwich? People who take a ferry to Harwich are, like it or not, going to end up in Harwich. People who go to the UK aren't necessarily going to end up in Harwich. We shouldn't tune the entire page to the needs of Harwich visitors.
There's plenty of "hard" information we can put in about ferries to the UK without having a 2-page table of every single ferry time, duration, etc. on the UK page. The country page is supposed to be somewhat generic -- giving highlights and overview info. That's the whole point. I mean, we don't have every single flight into and out of the UK listed in the "By plane" section -- we give some general info on the best entry points. I don't see why ferries should be all that different. --Evan 12:32, 4 Jan 2004 (EST)
Yes, I can see your point. At this early stage in the project it's worth experimenting with different styles, but I agree there's too much information there to go on the main page. I'll start slimming it down and move the details to the city pages. Matthewmayer 15:20, 4 Jan 2004 (EST)
Wow! I just looked over the "By boat" section after a long while, and I have to say: it looks great! Excellent job, folks. --Evan 22:46, 8 Feb 2004 (EST)

Old version for reference

  • Arriving from Scandinavia
    • Bergen to Newcastle (Fjord Line/2-3 per week/20-26 h)
    • Haugesund to Newcastle (Fjord Line/2 per week/21 h)
    • Stavanger to Newcastle (Fjord Line/2-3 per week/19-26 h)
    • Kristiansand to Newcastle (DFDS/Mon and Fri/18 h)
    • Gothenburg to Newcastle (DFDS/Mon and Fri/26 h)
    • Esbjerg to Harwich (DFDS/alternate days/17 h)
  • Arriving from Germany
    • Cuxhaven to Harwich (DFDS/alternate days/18.5 h)
  • Arriving from the Netherlands
    • Umuiden to Newcastle (DFDS/daily/15 h)
    • Hook of Holland to Harwich (???)
    • Rotterdam to Hull (P&O/daily overnight/10 h)
  • Arriving from Belgium
    • Zeebrugge to Hull (P&O/daily overnight/12:30 h), to Dover (P&O/up to 6 daily/4:30 h)
    • Ostend to Dover (Hoverspeed/up to 3 daily/2h)
  • Arriving from France
    • Dunkerque to Dover (Norfolkline/up to 10 daily/2h)
    • Calais to Dover (P&O/up to 35 daily/75-90 min, SeaFrance/15 daily/70-90 min, Hoverspeed/up to 15 daily/45 min)
    • Dieppe to Newhaven (Hoverspeed/up to 5 daily/2:15 h-4 h)
    • Le Havre to Portsmouth (P&O/3 daily/5.5 h)
    • Caen to Portsmouth (Britanny/3 daily/6 h)
    • Cherbourg to Portsmouth (P&O/up to 7 daily/2.45-5 h), Poole (Britanny/up to 5 daily/2:15 h-4h:15 h)
    • St Malo to Portsmouth, Weymouth
    • Roscoff to Plymouth
  • Arriving from Spain
    • Bilbao to Portsmouth
    • Santander to Plymouth
  • Arriving from Ireland
    • Cork to Swansea
    • Rosslare to Pembroke, Fishguard
    • Dun Laoghaire to Holyhead
    • Dublin to Holyhead, Mostyn, Liverpool
  • for services to/from the Isle of Man, Isle of Wight, Orkney Islands, Shetland Islands and Western Isles, see their 'get there' sections.
  • for services between Northern Island and Great Britain, see the 'get around' section below.
  • See http://www.ferryinformationservice.co.uk

External link: London Theatre Tickets direct?

Is the external link to LondonTheatreTicketsDirect really relevent here? I don't think it is.

I agree - it should be in London, if it should be anywhere at all (I have my doubts...). I have removed it. - sjc196 15:21, 13 Apr 2004 (GMT)

Lists of Cities

Is this the place for a list of cities? The UK is subdivided into its constituent countries, and England at least is further subdivided into regions. I think that lists of cities should be more localised, so that we do not have to wade through three pages of cities to reach the useful information. I don't think we need as many as 20 cities...especially when that list (supposedly of the UK's more notable cities) includes Derby and Milton Keynes.

I propose that this list be specifically for the capital cities of England, Northern Ireland, Wales and Scotland, and then within each of these country articles a slightly longer list is included, and then within regions (if applicable) a more exhaustive list is included. Any thoughts? - sjc196 14:03, 14 Apr 2004 (GMT)

You've hit the nail on the head (or close). In general, cities should only be listed at the most local region level. As an exception, at higher region levels, and at the country level, we list cities that are so popular with travellers that people are going to be impatient having to drill down through other pages to find them. So, the major cities and destinations go at the country level; it's just a "shortcut".
Note that a lot of people are just looking for a place to put their starter link for a city, so they just put the link where they see other links and hope for the best. Don't ascribe malice to their actions; it's great that they're sharing info, and we just need to re-arrange it a little.
Anyways: if you know where to re-locate some of these city links to, please do. Please leave some of the major non-capital cities, though. --Evan 12:02, 14 Apr 2004 (EDT)
Evan - just wanted to make sure before I went off and made someone a lot of work to change it all back again. And don't worry - I didn't think it was malicious!
I'll rearrange it a bit more sensibly and make sure that all the cities are represented somewhere within the UK hierarchy. - sjc196 10:23, 15 Apr 2004 (GMT)

The number of cities listed had gone up to over twenty, so I did some pruning. There are now four cities in England, the two largest urban centers in Scotland and Wales and the capital of Northern Ireland = 9, which conforms with the 7+2 listing rule. WindHorse 2 Feb 05

Added in Leeds - UK Visitor City of the Year and UK's Favourite City - surely very relevant to this page and UK's 3rd city

If you want to add Leeds, you need to also pick one to delete. Nine cities max to keep the list under control. Keep in mind the England article also gets to have nine cities, so it can cover England better. This article needs to spend some the alloted nine of the cities on Wales, Scotland, and Northern Ireland. I'm going to remove Leeds, but feel free to add it back once you've decided which of the nine it is going to replace. -- Colin 18:40, 4 May 2006 (EDT)

Bristol bitten the dust - not a top tourist destination nor top 3 UK city outside London. Why does it have to be 9 - 10 is a round number

The idea is to have just a short list of about 7. "About 7" means 7 plus or minus 2. And really, if you have more destinations than that, maybe it's because someone is overstuffing the top-level region instead of just letting the extras reside in the sub-regions. It's after all just a sampler, and no one gets hurt if some cities are pushed down into England instead of UK. -- Colin 15:21, 7 May 2006 (EDT)

Maybe London should be exluded from the list of cities as it is a capital city rather than a city, and everyone in the world knows that London is in the UK, and it is mentioned elsewhere in the article.

Added in Leeds - UK Visitor City of the Year and UK's Favourite City - surely very relevant to this page and UK's 3rd city. Yorkshire (largest county and big tourist attraction) completely unrepresented in city list.

Why is Bristol in this list? Leeds should be on top of that.

Conversion rates

So, do we really need the conversion rates for the pound sterling to other currencies to five places past the decimal point? I mean, this isn't a page for currency traders -- it's for travelers.

I think a more general range of conversions over the course of the last couple of years (e.g., 1 pound ~ 1.4 - 1.6 euro) might be more useful. We really don't need the conversion rates for more than mental math ("Lessee... 100 pounds... that's almost 200 dollars! No way I'll buy that!"). --Evan 16:34, 27 Jun 2004 (EDT)

Fair point. Rounded figures to 2 decimal places (eg. dollars&cents). Range would be even better, but not so easy to obtain. Chris j wood 05:35, 28 Jun 2004 (EDT)

List of Cities (reprise)

I have removed Liverpool from the list of cities at UK level (it is still there at the England level) because I don't think it rates inclusion. Specifically the city of liverpool is smaller than Leeds, Bradford and Sheffield, which are not listed. The metro area (normally called Merseyside) is smaller than that of Leeds (West Yorkshire). And in terms of inward tourism visits, Liverpool ranks only 15th in the UK (see http://www.staruk.org.uk//default.asp?ID=657&parentid=469).

As it now stands, we have the capital cities of the UK, England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland, together with the largest city in Scotland and what are generally reckoned to be the largest three English cities.

I think that is enough at this level. -- Chris j wood 12:10, 23 Jul 2004 (EDT)

OK, that sounds about right. Remember, though, that the whole point of the "cities" section in the country page and in region pages with sub-regions is to make a short cut for the more common cities that people will be looking for -- not necessarily the biggest cities. --Evan 12:18, 23 Jul 2004 (EDT)
If we use the 2001 Census definitions of cities, then Liverpool is 3rd largest in England, 4th largest in the UK. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_English_cities_by_population.

However I agree popularity with tourists is a better criterion.

Exile 07:50, 16 November 2006 (EST)

If you are to use the 2001 census, please refer to the actual census website, not wikipedia's interpretation. The census website proves Leeds as the UK's 3rd largest city with a population of 715,404 (2001). Most recent estimates put it at 761,100. Leeds is a much larger city than Liverpool. More importantly, it is the centre of a huge tourist industry. People visit Leeds not just for the city and all it's attractions, which of course include the world famous City Varieties and Opera North, but for the surrounding area. Leeds is the ideal base for exploring two world heritage sites, York & Harrogate and three national parks, as well as 3 areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty. Added to that, Leeds hosts an extensive festival line up with the UKs second largest carnival, Chapeltown Carnival, as well as Leeds Mela and of course Leeds Festival. Leeds is such a massive tourist destination, yet we have cities like Bristol, Belfast and Cardiff on the list? —The preceding unsigned comment was added by 90.219.186.143 (talkcontribs) 15 July 2009

Food Quality

The article seems to conforms to a sterotype of British food from 20 or 30 years ago. Even a quick google will find articles like http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk/1865385.stm I think the food section needs a rewrite, while the cost point is certainly accurate the quality is better than is represented.

That's not entirely true. Yes, food aimed at the Latte-sipping upper-middle classes has improved beyond recognition, but you'll find that the poorest 50% of the population in Britain still has an appalling diet and low standards, unlike countries in continental Europe. This was illustrated by the recent Jamie Oliver campaign. Also, in my experience food in Britain is a hit-and-miss affair anywhere outside London. 137.222.40.132 10:13, 2 March 2007 (EST)


The article talks about restaurants with waiting lists. Britain has many good points, its food and drinking culture is not one of them.
Food is getting better and better in The UK. Some of the best restaurants ARE outside London, because that IS the real UK. London is mostly for the tourists, frankly, now. Recently one of the best restaurants in the country was found to be in Ramsbottom (Bury) in Greater Manchester. Love the comment above about "the poorest 50% of the population". What is that all about?

Stub notice

Why is this still a stub? Has it been left by oversight?

If you feel that the article is complete, plunge forward and remove the stub notice. Many times people are nervous about removing those notices, but provided an article is useful and all sections are filled out there is no reason to keep it. -- Wrh2 17:54, 14 Jul 2005 (EDT)

Well I have gone ahead and destubbed it. I just wanted to make sure that there isn't some obscure guideline I wasn't aware of. -- Sunray Traveller 01:18, 15 Jul 2005 (EDT)

Stay safe nudity/sex

Under the "Stay safe" heading there are a couple of bullets about nudity and sex in public. They were factually incorrect and I have corrected them, but should they really be there at all? Do Wikitravellers really need advice on whether they can be nude or have sex in public in the countries they are visiting? Is this commonplace behaviour for some tourists from some cultures? -- Owl 03:30, 30 Sep 2005 (EDT)

Well, attitudes towards nude beaches might be worth a mention. Covering fornication in public does seem a little excessive. Jpatokal 03:33, 30 Sep 2005 (EDT)

'Ridiculous behaviour'

The article says that "Ridiculous as it may be, you may be judged on how you comport yourself at mealtimes". Considering that the website is intended to be read by people of all English speaking nations where this sort of behaviour may be seen as quite normal, is it fair to suggest that this is ridiculous?

Mealtime being such a ritualized behavior in most human cultures, I'm not sure if any exist where you wouldn't be judged by how you comport yourself then. --Evan 16:53, 27 April 2006 (EDT)

Mobile Phone Ownership

Is this really at 97% and growing? where does this information come from? 193.194.132.39 08:15, 7 April 2006 (EDT)

It's actually possible to have >100% mobile penetration if you just add up all subscriptions (eg. yours truly has 200-500% depending on how you count). However, Oftel estimated 75% actual ownership in 2003. Jpatokal 08:49, 7 April 2006 (EDT)

Help With Phone Numbers

I can't figure out how to write UK phone numbers according to the policy. If the number is 01865 270949 when dialed within the UK, can it be dialed as +44 01865 270949 from outside the UK? I keep seeing that first digit written as (0) and I'm not sure what I'm expected to infer from this since the UK article's Contact section doesn't tell me. I also can't find any examples which include both the country code +44 and the leading 0 which makes me wonder if that's invalid somehow. Argh. -- Colin 16:22, 27 April 2006 (EDT)

Bump. -- Colin 19:17, 28 April 2006 (EDT)
Yeah, I have no idea on this one, either. Maybe we should look over the Wikipedia article UK telephone numbering plan... I think the "0" is just a long-distance prefix, but I'm not sure how to reformat with the full international numbering. --Evan 07:22, 29 April 2006 (EDT)
OK, according to Wikipedia:Telephone_numbering_plan#United_Kingdom, you drop the leading zero and prefix with the country code. --Evan 07:27, 29 April 2006 (EDT)
Well, at least that matches what I was afraid of. We write the +44 format in our guide; travelers converting to local will remove the +44 and add the leading 0. -- Colin 13:05, 30 April 2006 (EDT)
At least for UK based mobile/cell phones (and I suspect landlines also), you can dial either number. +44 20 ... or 020 ... will both work. If you are calling the UK from abroad, you should not use the (0) - aka +44 20 ... is what you want from outside the UK. Thus +44 and ignoring the leading 0 is probably the simplest and "always right" option. However local custom (imho) would be that +44 (0) 20 is vastly more common. I agree it's confusing tho. It should be read as +44/0 20 ... (eg, +44 or 0, followed by 20 ...), but I have never seen it written that way. Almost always +44 (0) 20
You really can't, cos ...20 numbers are all landlines ;-) But yes, +44 <areacode-without-zero> <number> is unambiguous, and typing precisely that into a UK mobile will connect you, too.

Which nine cities?

We try to keep the number of cities/country to nine. This seems to work pretty well (if it doesn't, please try to change the policy on the appropriate page). The text of this article says we have "four in England, two each for Scotland and Wales and one in Northern Ireland". I think that's a pretty good breakdown -- but I just had to trim the six English cities back down to four. Maybe these aren't the right four...but please discuss that here, rather than just editing the page w/o comment. The current four are:

The two I deleted are:

If you think these are of more interest to the travel(l)er, please explain why, and which of the four above (hint: not London) should be excised to make room. -- Jonboy 11:41, 30 April 2006 (EDT) Added Leeds - UK's 3rd city, Uk's favourite city and UK visitor city of the year

  • Maybe Birmingham as the UK's second city is a better choice than Bristol, though it is a tough decision as the latter definitely has more attractions.
  • The north of England is already represented by Manchester and York, so I think Leeds, as interesting as it is, should be represented at the England page level, rather than at the UK level. WindHorse 15 May 06
  • Why Leeds rather than Manchester? Liverpool is more of a tourist destination in the NW than Manchester...
Swansea seems an odd inclusion to me, especially when there could be, say, Bristol, Liverpool or Newcastle in its stead. Also, I've (I hope!) improved the wording the cities section, removing an inaccuracy (Manchester's not yet the UK's second city, despite the apparent collective Mancunian chip on the shoulder about this - refer to any objective reputable source and it will still be using Birmingham as the second city, though also stating that Manchester is encroaching upon this position), and adding in a bit of detail (e.g., Glasgow is Scotland's largest city and former European Capital of Culture). 81.231.39.167 07:56, 23 July 2006 (EDT)
The Gower Peninsular, the UK's first designated area of natural beauty and home to two of Britain's top ten beaches/coastal views, is in Swansea. The city is also home to the National Waterfont Museum, a car ferry port and in addition hosts many festivals for tourists. While there are many cities that undoubtably have the credentials to be listed on the front page, unfortunately only nine can be. As a major tourist center in Wales (and one of only two places in Wales listed), I believe that the inclusion of Swansea is both valid and useful to travelers. WindHorse 2 Aug 06

Newcastle-upon-Tyne

Why is Newcastle not listed its the most important city in the northeast, its also roughly the half way point between Machester (which is strictly upper-midlands) and Edinburgh. Why has the true north of england been neglected, by excluding the a northeastern city are you giving the impression that there's nothing to do there? Newcastle is THE only ferry terminal on the north english coast, I think its worthy of being listed as one of the nine cities. Afterall, when asked to name a city from the north I'm confident that around 4 out of 10 would say Newcastle (accoutning for those likely to see Leeds, Manchester etc. and 4 out of 10 therefore being majoritive).

I suggest therefore, that either Leeds or Manchester be swapped for Newcastle-upon-Tyne.

I thought Hull was also a major ferry port?

Yeah Hull is a major port, but its more industrial, Newcastle is more a traveller port. Hull doens't have ferries departing for as many places as Newcastle.

Sorry what is all this about Manchester and the "Upper Midlands"? Manchester IS in the North West of England as is Liverpool.You leave the North West going south through Cheshire and then cross into The Midlands as you enter Staffordshire. This is also a clearly defined EU Region (Greater Manchester , Merseyside, Lancashire, Cheshire and Cumbria) and has always been referred to as The North West. Please also note Manchester is the third most visited city in The UK.I feel Liverpool needs much more of a mention in view of recent developments.

Electricity/Plug Information

I think it is worth mentioning to travellers the type of plugs that are used in the UK. The Israel page details that a two or three pronged plug may be used depending on regions, I think it is worth mentioning somewhere that the UK uses a three pronged plug (unlike the majority of the world).

The Map

I think the map used for this page tells the user very little. Where is York? Birmingham? Bath? Leeds? Surely this is better http://www.eris.dircon.co.uk/map.JPG or atleast a map with a few more cities on it: http://www.airtool-yutani.co.jp/zairyou/map%20of%20UK.gif


  • I have added Birmingham to the list. It is Englands second city and deserves to be on there.
  • Deserves to be on there because a lot of people live there? I've added Leeds - voted UK's favourite city, visitor city of the year, voted best city for clubbing, close to Yorkshire Dales and Moors etc etc

Warning box?

Should there be an info/warning box regarding the special travel restrictions for flights departing from the UK? Maj 23:29, 12 August 2006 (EDT)

The old city problem

Sorry for bringing up this old chestnut but it there's some oddities in the list of cities on here. It seems that the list was arrived at essentially on the basis of the national capitals plus whichever cities people argued for the most (that's the only possible reason I can think of for listing Swansea as one of the 9 most important cities for travellers; no disrespect to Swansea but I doubt the vast majority of visitors to the UK have even heard of it much less visited it). Leeds ahead of Birmingham, Liverpool or Newcastle is another oddity. Anyway, to get to the point it seems the problem is that everyone has different ideas of what makes an important city (often influenced by what city they're from). It might be an idea, then, to rely on objective rather than subjective criteria. To that end I found a page listing the most popular destinations of overseas tourists from 2000-2004 [1]. Taking only those cities that appear in all 4 years the total number of visitors from 2000-2004 breaks down as follows:

City Visitors (thousands)
London 47900
Edinburgh 3380
Manchester 2440
Birmingham 2360
Glasgow 1650
Oxford 1520
Cambridge 1220
Cardiff 1020
Brighton/Hove 1000
York 990
Bristol 946
Bath 930
Newcastle-upon-Tyne 800
Liverpool 780
Nottingham 740
Inverness 730

On that basis it would seem that after taking out the 4 capitals (London, Edinburgh, Cardiff and Belfast) the 5 most visited cities are Manchester, Birmingham, Glasgow, Oxford, Cambridge and Brighton. Personally I'd be tempted to either lump Oxford and Cambridge together or drop one of them (as it doesn't really make sense to have two cities which offer pretty much exactly the same kinds of attractions) and make room for York. That list of cities covers a lot of bases and the cities are all pretty much what you'd expect, with the exception of Brighton (whose high ranking I must admit came as a surprise to me, but at least it gives a seaside option). Does anyone have any real objections to changing the list to London, Edinburgh, Cardiff, Belfast, Manchester, Birmingham, Glasgow, Oxford/Cambridge, Brighton and York? --Paul. 08:02, 12 October 2006 (EDT)

Well argued! I like it. -- Jonboy 08:44, 12 October 2006 (EDT)


The only figures I can find regarding tourists visiting Swansea were from a government panel established to determine the best places to locate regional casinos. Here's the result: The latest available data estimates that in 2004 there were 3,187,000 tourists spending 5,869,000 tourist days in Swansea and generating revenue of £192 million. This represents a 5 year growth of 12.7% in the number of tourists, 5.4% in tourist days and 9.2% in revenue.

I cannot say how many of these tourists were from overseas, but from my knowledge, the Gower Peninisular, which is part of Swansea, is certainly very popular with domestic tourists. However, as Paul points out, the peninsular and city are probably less well known overseas.

Brighton is another town that attracts a lot of native British tourists, especially from London. In fact, I think when I was in the UK I heard it jokingly referred to as 'London on Sea'. So, its position in the above list would probably be even higher if British tourists were factored in.

I would guess that due to Robin Hood fame, Nottingham probably gets relatively more overseas visitors than domestic. Liverpool maybe in the same position, due to the international fame of the Beatles. Therefore, they would probably rank lower on an complete list taking into account all visitors.

Anyway, I have no objections to changing the list as suggested, though as York is already listed on the 'Other destinations' section, maybe somewhere else (possibly Bristol as that is the next popular city on the 'Star UK' list) could take its place. WindHorse 12:53, 12 October 2006 (EDT)

Sounds good, and if we're going to keep York in "Other destinations" it might be an idea to move Oxford, Cambridge and Bath there too (on the basis of size) and add Newcastle to the cities list. --Paul. 17:13, 12 October 2006 (EDT)
HI Paul, Bath is actually already listed in "Other destinations". However, places listed in this section are there in respect to a landmark building, not as towns within their own right. Please take a look. So, Oxford and Cambridge could be added to this list if they have (a) landmark building(s) that are considered worthy tourist attractions - I guess possibly the university buildings themselves or the dreamy spires (is that Oxford?) would meet this criteria. Sorry, I'm really not very familar with these towns, so I am afraid that I'll have to leave that up to you. Apologies. WindHorse 20:54, 12 October 2006 (EDT)
Oxford and Cambridge are indeed similar, but I'm not sure you could exclude one in favour of the other on that basis. They certainly have tourist attractions as the relevant pages show. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by 81.150.215.237 (talkcontribs) 25 October 2006
Sorry it took so long to get back. I had looked at the "Other destinations" (I remember making a mental note to add Warwick in, give the photo of the castle) but somehow managed to miss that Bath was there. Regarding Oxford and Cambridge, though there may be other attractions in the cities, the universities are by far and away the major attractions (the "dreaming spires" of Oxford are in fact the spires of the university colleges) so they could both be added as one "other destinations" listing. With that in mind I'll go ahead and change the 9 cities to London, Edinburgh, Cardiff, Belfast, Manchester, Birmingham, Glasgow, Brighton, Bristol and Newcastle, and add Oxford and Cambridge to the "Other destinations". If anyone really dislikes it they can always change it back. --Paul. 20:53, 26 October 2006 (EDT)

How many of these 'foreign tourists' are actually visiting the city though? EG take Manchester - how many of these were football fans/people visiting the airport... I cannot see that Manchester is higher on the list of a foreign tourist than York or Bath...


Believe me we in Manchester are seeing a massive rise in tourist numbers from both overseas and from elsewhere in the UK. Many do use it as a base to visit elsewhere in Northern England and North Wales because of our central location. i buy into the "most visited" argument.

I don't think these figures are compiled from airport numbers. Otherwise, places like Bath which doesn't have an airport wouldn't be on the list at all. I'm sure, however, that you are correct in your assumption that lot of foreign visitors going to Manchester and probably also Cardiff do so to attend sports meetings, but they are still visitors and therfore need information about the city where they will be staying/visiting. The info is not only for tourists, but also for business people, sport's fans or basically anyone who is traveling. WindHorse 21:23, 5 November 2006 (EST)

Not suggesting numbers from airport numbers, but probably include people spending one night in Manchester before/after flying, skewing the numbers. Realistically how can there be more tourists to Manchester than York/Bath?

I think the point WindHorse was trying to make is that though more tourists may go to Manchester than York, Wikitravel is not just for tourists and so business travellers and others also need to be taken into account. Even someone just flying to and from a city and staying one night would benefit from information on hotels, restaurants, bars and so on. In any case, this really is the only objective measurement we have; everyone will have different opinions as to which cities are "most worthy" so it's better to rely on which cities are most visited. If you can find statistics which take account of length of stay as well as number of visitors, however, then they could certainly be taken into account. --Paul. 16:07, 7 November 2006 (EST)
Also if you look at the bottom of the Star UK page linked to in the first post you'll see that it says clearly at the bottom that day visits are excluded. --Paul. 16:13, 7 November 2006 (EST)

There is really no arguement for Brighton to be included in this list. Okay so its got a bit of an off-beat (if over gentrified) vibe, a thriving gay community and an ironically tacky pier, and its "cool" but really its not a very attractive, interesting or big town and i can't imagine very many foreign tourists, except those misguided by lists such as this, or those on a day trip from London will really visit the place. It is taking up space that could be occupied by beautiful historic and interesting cities like York, Cambridge, Oxford, Bath, etc or dynamic, interesting big cities such as Leeds and Liverpool which have loads of culture, architecture, shops and nightlife to offer the tourists - far more than Brighton - and increasingly so! Also, I know its the second city and everything but Birmingham ain't that great...and Newcastle doesn't have huge amounts beyond nightlife, waterfront and a collection of historic buildings. Cardiff is quite a dull, generic city, the waterfront apart...I know Wales 'needs representing' but it counts for a very small proportion of the population, compared to somewhere like Yorkshire with a far larger population and far more diverting cities of Leeds and York.

Ultimately whether you, or I, think Brighton deserves to be on the list is irrelevent. Clearly many people do, as more people visit there than visit Liverpool or Leads. Again, I'll stress that we could argue on here from now until the end of time about what exactly makes a city "worth visiting" and we would probably never reach agreement. Everyone has their own favourite cities they want to see on the list and would choose whatever criteria best suit their city. That's why we've chosen to rely on the objective measure of which cities are most visited. And unfortunately Leeds isn't one of them. If you can think of a clearly objective criteria that's better then feel free to suggest it, but arguing over which city has the best history, or is the most interesting will get us nowhere. --Paul. 16:46, 7 November 2006 (EST)


So if "Wikitravel is not just for tourists and so business travellers and others also need to be taken into account" why are we only counting foreign tourist visits? Also surely staying at airport hotel overnight = 2 day visit not a day visit?

I don't think the list above is only foreign tourist visits, despite what the top of the Star UK page says I think the International Passanger Survey takes all visits into account. You may be right on the 2 day visit thing, but as I said it really doesn't make a difference. Again, though, if you have access to figures that take into account types of visit and/or length of stay they can definitely be taken into account. --16:30, 8 November 2006 (EST)

"Top towns visited by overseas residents"

Nights spent by tourists 2003: West Yorks (main city Leeds)9.8Mil http://www.staruk.org.uk//default.asp?ID=719&parentid=469 Greater Manchester (main city Manchester) 8Mil http://www.staruk.org.uk//default.asp?ID=715&parentid=469 West Mids (main city Birmingham) 10.8Mil http://www.staruk.org.uk//default.asp?ID=711&parentid=469

Two things: firstly, those figures only cover UK residents, they don't include foreign tourists. Secondly, the figures you posted are 2004 only. If you add the 2000-2004 figures together the total becomes:
West Yorkshire 38.6 million
Greater Manchester 42.1 million
West Midlands 51.4 million
I personally wouldn't say, then, that we can use those figures to conclusively show that Leeds is more visited than Manchester or Birmingham. --Paul. 20:28, 8 November 2006 (EST)

So we can use figs that excl UK residents and incl foreign, but not the other way round? Also who is to say we should base it on the average (upto 6 yrs old) and not the most recent data available (only 3 yrs old)?

I'd argue that it's preferable to use overseas figures as it's overseas tourists that are more likely to need guides, but I'd accept that it's not a major factor so I won't argue too hard on that point. As for using the average, it simply gives a more accurate overall picture. In any given year one area may have a sudden change in popularity, up or down, for any number of reasons (from bad press to festivals). Taking a spread of years evens things out more. --Paul. 17:32, 9 November 2006 (EST)

Why not change the wording from "Many cities and towns in the United Kingdom are of interest to travellers outside the capital city of London." to "Many cities and towns in the United Kingdom are of interest to travellers outside the capital cites of London, Edinburgh, Belfast and Cardiff." This then allows a more varied list of 9 cities. Listing London, Edinburgh, Cardiff and Belfast separately is pointless, as everyone knows what they are about anyway...

I really don't quite follow the logic here. Because cities are well known and popular they shouldn't be listed? In any case, as far as I'm aware all other country pages list capitals in the cities section, and listing some cities in the paragraph and some separately would kind of defeat the purpose of limiting the list to 9 cities. --Paul. 17:32, 9 November 2006 (EST)

What purpose does listing the capital city of a country serve. How many people visiting England/Scotland/Wales will see London/Edinburgh/Cardiff in the list of cities and think "I'm glad they put that city in the list - I wouldn't have thought of visiting there if it hadn't been listed out separately". The list is of more use to the visitor if it lists regional cities that they know less about. Information for tourists is only useful if it tells them something they didn't know already. It would be like listing 9 things you should bring when travelling to the UK, and including suitcase, shoes, passport etc on the list instead of UK plug adapter, warm clothes for winter etc.

The cities listing isn't supposed to be a suggestion of interesting places to go, it's supposed to be a quick and handy way of getting to the major city articles from the country template. I think you might benefit from reading some of the help pages, in particular Wikitravel:Country article template, to get a fuller understanding of how Wikitravel works. --Paul. 17:59, 9 November 2006 (EST)

Just seems odd that in a list of "prominent cities" (see Wikitravel:Country article template), that Bath, Leeds, Liverpool and York are missing. Remember that this article is effectively covering 4 countries rather than 1 as the template is for. Maybe this gives scope for changing the template slightly?...

If you still find it odd that Bath, Leeds, Liverpool and York are missing you really need to re-read all the posts on here about the subject. Leeds and Liverpool simply don't attract as many visitors (according to the best stats we have) as Britstol or Newcastle, while the Roman baths in Bath and York Minster are covered in "other destinations". Finally this article isn't covering four countries, it's covering one: the United Kingdom. England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland have their own articles, and the major cities of those countries are listed in those articles. --Paul. 19:54, 9 November 2006 (EST)

Best stats we have = data upto 6 years old and exluding UK based tourists, who actually make up the bulk of tourist trips to UK cities.

Do I have to explain why taking the total over a range of years is better again? In any case, as you admitted they're still the best stats we have. Even if we take the stats you (I assume it was you, it would really help if you got an account) posted earlier, the results still come out the same way. Please, either post better stats that show that Leeds is more visited than any of the cities listed above, or stop complaining about the stats we do have. ---Paul. 12:01, 10 November 2006 (EST)

Quoted rather than admitted... The stats we have are very weak indeed is my point, and although an average does remove fluctuations in visitor numbers over a number of years, it is the most recent data that indicates tourist trends. IE Between 2000 and 2003 Birmingham and Manchester were more popular with British tourists, but most recently Leeds has outperformed them. Or if you prefer we could graph them, and add a line of best fit, showing downward trends for Manchester and Birmingham with upward trend for Leeds. And if we are talking about fluctuations, the prescence of Manchester United being in the Champions League in recent years has massively boosted visitor numbers. Were they not to qualify numbers would be down. Similarly the Commonwealth games were a fluctuation that boosted visitors in one year. Not to mention, separately of visitor numbers Leeds has won Conde Naste Travel magazine "UK favourite city" and Good Britain Guide "Visitor City of the Year".

Your claim that "between 2000 and 2003 Birmingham and Manchester were more popular with British tourists, but most recently Leeds has outperformed them" is simply not true according to the stats you yourself posted. Assuming that visits to the West Midlands/West Yorkshire/Greater Manchester broadly reflect visits to their main cities (which is not an assumption I'm 100% comfortable in making), the fact remains that there were more nights spent in the West Midlands in every year from 2000-2003, while Greater Manchester was more popular in 2001 and 2002 and West Yorkshire more popular in 2000 and 2003. That does not to me translate to anything even close to conclusive proof that Leeds is now a more popular destination than Manchester. Furthermore, both Greater Manchester and the West Midlands had a greater number of visitors than West Yorkshire in every single one of the years covered.
As to Leeds' awards, they're very nice, but every city will no doubt have its own awards to point to as a criteria for inclusion, which is why I still think number of visitors is a better criteria. The simple fact is that you clearly desperately want Leeds to be in this list, and I suspect that no statistics that do not show Leeds as being one of the most popular cities will ever be satisfactory to you, nor will any criteria that exclude Leeds. I personally have no preference either way, and I accept that there are limitations to the statistics posted here. As such I remain open to other statistical sources, but I'm not willing to accept one narrow set of statistics which are cherry picked in order to bolster the case of your prefered city. I have tried to calmly explain my own reasoning on this issue, but at this point I'm going to have to bow out of the discussion as I do not believe there is anything I or anyone else can say that will change your view that Leeds should be in the list. I personally remain unconvinced, but am willing to change my mind if either conclusive statistics are posted or there is a clear consensus supporting Leeds' inclusion. I hope you will be willing to do the same. --Paul. 17:48, 10 November 2006 (EST)

Brighton attracts absolutley loads of foreign visitors and students, how can you say that it doesn't? There are so many language schools for european students who choose to learn english there because they love the cosmopolitan atmosphere, and the city feels very european so they feel right at home. Brighton is a fairly large city (unlike Cambridge, Oxford etc) that has many top attractions, like it's beautiful seafront, regency architecture, Royal Pavilion, pier, excellent and unique shopping, year round cultural events like England's largest arts festival in May, the largest gay pride event in the UK, I could go on... It also has the most amount of bars/clubs/restaurants per head than anywhere outside London, so is a top night out. Brighton is also developing fast with some world class developments planned for the future including a brand new concert arena, the UK's tallest observation tower, redevelopment of the marina area with a stunning 40 storey skyscraper with bars/shops surrounding it, a brand new Brighton conference centre, an extended shopping mall leading down to the seafront, and that is not even half of what is planned. So is it really hard to see why Brighton beats the likes of rather average and pretty dull cities like Leeds, Nottingham etc.?

See Leeds page to see why it beats Brighton on foreign student numbers, museums, shopping, music festivals, nightlife, skyscrapers (52 storey tallest outside London). This page is SO anti-Leeds that it doesn't even appear on the map!

Actually the CIA made that map, so you might want to complain to them. Probably best not to do it in person, however. --Paul. 19:59, 13 November 2006 (EST)
Much as I like Leeds (my spouse comes from there) it is not one of the top 9 tourist destinations by any measure. The top 9 for foreign visitors are

London Edinburgh Glasgow Birmingham Manchester Glasgow Oxford Bristol Cambridge

For domestic visitors (excluding business travellers) I'm not sure we have any reliable stats but I would guess Blackpool beats all except London, and I'd expect maybe Torquay, Scarborough, Bournemouth, Brighton to feature with York, Oxford, Cambridge and Chester representing the non-seaside English towns.

I suspect the reason Bristol is in there is for visitors to Bath (which is short of hotel accomodation). And Birmingham - for Stratford on Avon and Warwick.

Thanks for your input. However, don't forget that vistors does not only mean tourists, but business people, sports fans - basically anyone that is visiting a city and needing information. WindHorse 11:02, 16 November 2006 (EST)

Exile 08:04, 16 November 2006 (EST)

A new map, another denial that Leeds exists!....

I would also like to point out that surely the quality and quantity of information available on the city destinations on wikitravel (a) shows something about the quality of the city and the quantity of its attractions and (b) should be taken into account when assessing whether a city should make this list - for example the guide to Brighton is around a fifth of the size and with nothing like the depth of information of the Leeds guide

Obviously the amount of information on a Wiki-style article is not necessarily a clear indication of the amount of attractions in a given city. It could just be that someone has been more active in adding information for one place than for another. Sorry, man, I like your article. I think its great and Leeds also seems like an interesting city, but I'm afraid that I come out in full support of Paul on this one. However, everything is impermanent, so I suggest we let the subject drop and check the tourist figures for UK cities again next year. And, who knows, maybe Leeds will be in the top nine. If it is, I'll be one of the first to support your request to include it on the UK front page, OK? WindHorse 11:29, 23 November 2006 (EST)

Why not use number of hotel beds available as an indicator of the popularity of any given city (to overseas tourists/uk tourists/business visitors? The hotel beds would not exist if there were not the demand, and the majority of visitors will stay in hotels? If I could provide data on this - would other Wikitravellers accept this as a more relevant measure than average number of overseas visitors?

If the data's available I'd have no problem using it. One slight possible note of caution is that it's possible that using hotel beds as an indicator of popularity might skew things in favour of places that have huge numbers of visitors for a short period every year and against places which have a more consistent flow of visitors, but I don't think that will be too big an issue with the cities we're looking at. --Paul. 01:35, 6 December 2006 (EST)
I agree with Paul. However, if we are deciding which cities to include on the front page list based on the number of people visiting these places, then obviously visitor figures provide the most reliable and up-to-date indication. For example, some traditional sea-side resorts may still have a high number of hotel beds, but in recent years they may not reach capacity. Therefore, I still believe that using visitor figures is the most accurate way to decide this matter. However, as I said above, everything changes, so these figures should checked again in a year and the lists amended accordingly. WindHorse 02:00, 6 December 2006 (EST)

The data I have doesn't have any old seaside towns in the top 9 - so this isn't a problem. Go to http://www.urbanaudit.org/rank.aspx Select Culture and recreation > Number of available beds> United Kingdom > Score descending > 2001. Leaving in Cardiff, Edinburgh, Glasgow and Belfast, the top 6 cities from this data are Birmingham, Manchester, Leeds, Newcastle & Bristol. I believe this is the best indication we have since hotels serve UK and foreign tourists, business travellers etc etc. The supply is there to meet demand - if there were no demand then there would be hotel closures. The stats we are currently using exclude UK tourists and business travellers. "The Urban Audit collects information on the living conditions in 258 large and medium-sized cities within the European Union and the candidate countries (EU27)."

I checked, but it only has info up to 2001. Also, it obviously has not factored in all places. For example, for the UK visitor figures it has Belfast first and Derry second ?!? Then, for the bed availability it lists Stevenage, Worcester and Graveshead in the top twenty but excludes places like Edinburgh, Glasgow, Cardiff, Southamton, Bournemouth, Swansea and Aberdeen. Based on this information, do you honestly think we can trust these statistics - be honest - I mean Derry number two for visitor figures in the whole of the UK and Stevenage above Edinburgh!!! I think we should stick to the official government recognized stats. Anyway, thanks for searching out this info. It is always good to have new sources. Take it easy. WindHorse 22:54, 6 December 2006 (EST)
I agree that the years and limited number of cities mean that the use of that particular list is limited. However, the site in question did lead to Eurostat which does have more useful data, albeit a horrible interface to navigate through. I finally managed to pull off the data from their site, but there's a large amount so rather than show it here I've created a special page for it, the StarUK data and anything else we might find at User:Paul./UK Tourism Data. --Paul. 03:40, 8 December 2006 (EST)

So why can't we use the Eurostat info on hotel beds that Paul has kindly given (includes all top cities)? Surely a more realistic indicator of visitor numbers? The stats we use exclude UK tourists and business tourists. Also there is the simple fact that the hotels only exist if there is demand... As pointed out by Paul the seaside towns have skewed stats. Anyone agree?

Using those stats is fine with me, though as our Leeds friend has pointed out there is a problem with the sea-side resort stats. If their bed capacity rates are high, then they should be duly considered because whether visitors come in a slow stream throughout the year or on mass at specific seasons is not relevant. They still need information about the places they are staying. However, there is probably no way easy to find out a specific place's bed capacity rate. Obviously, the most reliable stats are actual visitor figures, but it seems that Eurostat only has numbers for overseas visitors. So, let's see what the consensus of opinion says. Then, whatever is agreed upon can be used in the future, which hopefully make the majority of British contributors happy. WindHorse 20:02, 8 December 2006 (EST)

No one seems to disagree - go ahead and update the city list?

I suggest leaving it. I think the present list for the UK is pretty representative taking into account hotel bed numbers plus foreign tourist stats. If it is changed using the bed numbers alone, then Torbay and Bournemouth (which I believe to be comparatively small places) will be in the main list at the exclusion of some major cities, and we have no way to know the hotel capacity rate for these sea-side places. However, I have less opposition to a review of the England list. WindHorse 21:08, 12 December 2006 (EST)

Oh and don't forget, using hotel beds would include Leeds in the top 10, which isn't in keeping with the UK Wikipage. Obviously Leeds has all those beds for no good reason.

OK. I think I/we need to make a decision and clear statement on on this. Otherwise, it is not fair to continuously waste the time of our Leeds friend. I vote to retain the current list of cities on the main UK page, because based on a combination of figures I believe it offers a good representation of UK cities. From what others have said earlier, this also seems to be the general consensus. Therefore, I propose retaining the current list of cities as it is, but to review it in a year or so when new stats are available. However, I am open to discuss the list of cities on the England page. I should add that as I have not visited the majority of these UK cities, my opinion is objective and based on the facts presented only. I hope this decision is satisfactory to most people. And, to my Leeds friend, keep up the good work on the Leeds and Yorkshire articles. They are looking great. Cheers. WindHorse 22:10, 13 December 2006 (EST)

Hardly a 'combination of figures' - it comes from one data source, which uses data 3-6 years old, and includes only one visitor group (foreigners). The hotel data is only 2 years old and the simple fact is cities have more hotel beds because they have more visitors. Torbay and Bournemouth can be excluded as it is clear their capacity is seasonal. Can you give a good reason why, if Leeds (or any other non seasonal visitor destination) has a top 10 number of hotel beds in the UK, wouldn't be in the top 10 visited by foreigners, UK residents and business people? Windhorse: "don't forget that vistors does not only mean tourists, but business people, sports fans - basically anyone that is visiting a city". Paul: "post better stats that show that Leeds is more visited than any of the cities". Yes, total visitor numbers would be the 'ultimate' measure, but we don't have this. Hotel bed numbers are a clear indication of total visitor numbers according to the laws of supply and demand.

OK. This is the final word on this from me as we are beginning to go round in circles on this issue to no benefit. If we exclusively use bed figures, Leeds is number number 10 - this list of cities is nine only. We will have Torbay and Bournemouth, but not Leeds. If we look at the figures for overseas visitors (note, these numbers cover all visitors, not only tourists), Leeds is not listed in the top twenty-five. So, again, sorry but based on this information I believe that the present list is fine, and I am not in favor of changing it. However, as I said, we should review the list in a year or so when new stats are available. That's it, my friend. Keep up the excellent work on the Leeds and Yorkshire articles. They are looking great. Cheers. WindHorse 22:08, 14 December 2006 (EST)

1. The list is 9 cities outside London 2. Torbay and Bournemouth are obviously seasonal destinations and can sensibly be excluded 3. Overseas visitors are a smaller % of city visitors than UK visitors, how can you sensibly ignore UK visitors - Leeds has a high number of hotel beds for a very simple reason - it has a high number of visitors - can you deny this? 4. Would there really be such a problem for Leeds to be in the list, given that it has such a high number of hotel beds, clearly there to meet demand?

So what does 'reaching a consensus' mean? Convincing Windhorse, gatekeeper of the city list? Surely it can't be denied a non seasonal destination has a high number of hotel beds to meet demand from the high number of visitors?

I agree that Leeds clearly should not be listed. I'd also like to see London re-integrated into the main list instead of being listed in the intro. -- Colin 16:39, 16 December 2006 (EST)

But the current list is based on stats, not opinion. The statistics on hotel beds shows Leeds as having a high number of hotel beds - to meet high visitor numbers perhaps?

Listing London as an interesting city to visitors whilst in the UK is like listing a passport as a useful item to carry when travelling between countries. I can't imagine there's many people who will find the listing of London as useful, not like they won't be well aware of it.

"Please, either post better stats that show that Leeds is more visited than any of the cities listed above, or stop complaining about the stats we do have" "If the data's available I'd have no problem using it. One slight possible note of caution is that it's possible that using hotel beds as an indicator of popularity might skew things in favour of places that have huge numbers of visitors for a short period every year and against places which have a more consistent flow of visitors, but I don't think that will be too big an issue with the cities we're looking at." "If we exclusively use bed figures, Leeds is number number 10 - this list of cities is nine only. We will have Torbay and Bournemouth, but not Leeds." "1. The list is 9 cities outside London 2. Torbay and Bournemouth are obviously seasonal destinations and can sensibly be excluded 3. Overseas visitors are a smaller % of city visitors than UK visitors, how can you sensibly ignore UK visitors - Leeds has a high number of hotel beds for a very simple reason - it has a high number of visitors - can you deny this?"

It seems according to http://wikitravel.org/en/Wikitravel_talk:Region_article_template that the list needs to be rejigged to include London and one city lost from the existing list...

New Data for 2007 - New concensus required for changes in light of new data

The decsion on which cities to include in the list of Nine has been based on visitor numbers/tourists. Using the latest 2006 ONS overseas visiter tables from the government, and the 2007 National Tourism Agencey uk visitor numbers, it appears the list of 9 cities chosen is now inconsistent with the most comprehensive and up to date data on tourist numbers of UK cities. Here are the findings below:

The data shows that places such as cardiff do not receive as many visitors as numerous cities that are not included in the list. However, London, Cardiff, Edinburgh, and Belfast need to be included by default given that they are capitals.

The next noteworthy find with the new data is the combination of adding total overseas visitor numbers to total UK visitor numbers:

Leeds 1,436,000 uk visitis + 292,000 overseas = 1,728,000

Newcastle 1,298,000 visits + 317,000 overseas = 1,615,000

York 1,247,000 uk visits + 253,000 overseas = 1,500,000

Brighton [not in top 10 therefore <1,247,000 uk visits] + 265,000 overseas = <1,500,00

This means according to the criteria for choosing, for which a consensus has *already* been found, Newcastle & Brighton fail to meet this criteria as there are clearly other cities that have more total visitors. This means, to make the list more representative of the cities that are visited in the UK based on the most up to date visitor data from the government's ONS and National Tourism Agency it would be necessary to remove brighton and newcastle from the list and replce them with Leeds & York. I hearby propose to make this change. If people can voice their opinions regarding this proposal so that a concensus can be made. It is also noteworthy to point out that a concensus to change *how* we choose the list of nine is not being asked here - a concensus on how to choose the nine has already been made - that being Visitor Numbers. My proposal is to actually make the list consistent with the most up to date and most comprehensive visitor number data available from the government, rather than relying on old and patchy data.

Sources: Gov ONS data 2006: http://www.a2mediagroup.com/?c=146&a=18406 National Tourism Agencey: http://www.visitbritain.com/en/press/press-releases/campaign-popularity.aspx :) --Daniel robinson 20:35, 1 November 2007 (EDT)

Can people please voice their opinions on this proposal, before a motion to change the anomaly in the list is made. --Daniel robinson 21:45, 1 November 2007 (EDT)

I would completely agree, based on these stats, there is no reason why we shouldn't make the changes.

These statistics together with many other reasons show that a change must be made. Leeds is consistently underrepresented and maligned on here.

If Leeds is that well visited as PROVEN on here, then it deserves it's place on the list, regardless of the pathetic agenda to keep it off. Wikipidia is SUPPOSED to be a source of accurate information...Lenny Henry

Not to rain on the Leeds (a city I happen to like!) parade, but the number used for domestic visitors seems to be incorrect. If my reading of the article is right, then the 1.436 million is the number of website visitors who said they had been encouraged to visit Leeds, presumably because of the campaign. Hardly a reliable statistic for anything, let alone indicating actual visits to the city.--Wandering 14:54, 2 November 2007 (EDT)
Hi Wandering. I do feel you have misinterpreted the data. They are overnight stays by UK visitors. The data of 1.4 million incidently coincides with the the leeds city council website. If your asertation were true, that the data is just visitors to the website who have said they had been encouraged to visit respective cities, that would be over 30 million people doing the survey - lol. . --Daniel robinson 15:07, 2 November 2007 (EDT)
This website source below further confrims that the Data from the 2007 national tourism agencey is infact offcial data and not a survey: http://www.travelmole.com/stories/1122656.php --Daniel robinson 15:18, 2 November 2007 (EDT)
I think the bickering over which cities to list is a waste of energy. There are loads of articles out there which are crying out for more content adding, their English and grammar improving or their formatting tidying-up. Let's spend our time usefully rather than pursuing our own hobby-horses in trying to get our pet cities listed. I say leave the cities list alone and move on. Andyfarrell 15:24, 2 November 2007 (EDT)
but this is not about bickering. This is about making the data consisent rather factually incorrect. The list has been formed from visitor numbers, however there is clearly an inconsistenty. Wikiptravel is about being able to edit articles to make them more accurate. If someone wants to edit to make something accurate (that isnt based on subjectivity) realisticly there should be no problems doing this - as the "plunge forward" motto points out. If this was a subjective issue, than fair enough. But its not. A concencus has already been made on making the list representative of visitor numbers, and so removing an error should not be an issue. --Daniel robinson 15:55, 2 November 2007 (EDT)

It would seem completely ridiculous that Leeds is not included as it is, considering that it is one of the largest and most important cities in the United Kingdom, and a massively important tourist base for the region and indeed the north of England. As a tourist destination, it carries alot more weight than some cities included. It is therefore crucial that Leeds is on this list, to give Wikipedia more credibility in recognising official statistics rather than random enthusiasts views.Jcl 18:47, 2 November 2007 (EDT)

Yeah, but guys, this isn't Wikipedia, there is a different approach here. Those random enthusiasts' views have a place here in creating a colourful guide. The purpose isn't as Dan says about being able to edit, the purpose is to create practical travel guides. The UK article is already very useable, and swapping Newcastle for Leeds on a technicality doesn't add significantly to that. Furthermore it saps our time and energy if we dedicate ourselves to ongoing back-and-forth arguments.
I've only spoken up because Dan was touting for comments to get a new consensus - so you've had my opinion. Sorry if you don't like it. :-) Now I'm off to make some real edits, and I warmly invite you to join me. Andyfarrell 03:44, 3 November 2007 (EDT)
This issue has been discussed well and thoroughly, and I commend all involved. One result of such a massive discussion is that the current status quo is not just a random status quo, but a thoroughly worked-out status quo with plenty of consensus. To alter this outcome now will take more than just a few objections to the outcome. I would want to see a significant uprising against this worked-through consensus before allowing it to change. Or in other words, I support the status quo because of the sheer volume of good-faith effort that has been put into coming up with this consensus. -- Colin 15:13, 3 November 2007 (EDT)
Hi there, I appreciate your concerns in that changing this would change the status quo, however, there appears to be no-one actually objecting to this on any valid grounds other than "we should be putting our effort into other things". I dont feel this is a good enough reason for not changing a glaring anomaly. Interestingly, scrolling thru this whole disccusion, there hasnt actually been any consensus at all on what cities to include. The only loose consensus is that the list should reflect visitor numbers. However, the most up to date data shows that the list doesnt actually reflect visitor numbers. There has never been a hoard of people insisting Newcastle should be on the list, however there is clearly many people on here insisting Leeds should be on the list - and ironically, the number of people in favour of leeds being on the list is *more* than the number of people who formed an original shaky consensus - and this new data for 2007, even backs the old consensus of basing it on visitor numbers, so it seems very odd that a small number of people want to stifle what should be on wikitravel - despite wikitravel being open to everyone to contribute. --Daniel robinson 15:27, 3 November 2007 (EDT)

Windhorse also indicated he would support these changes based on the more up to date info.

I completely agree with Daniel Robinson, and would like to point out the arbitrary, dismissive and offensive nature of Andyfarrell's last post. There seem to be no valid reasons for not replacing Newcastle or Brighton with Leeds on the list. I have previously argued on the grounds of being a "colourful enthusiast" who completely overhauled the Leeds article (though bizzarely and somewhat suspiciously bits of it were later edited out on dubious grounds to make the article less appealing), and pointed out the numerous attractions and sheer size and importance of Leeds compared to these two cities, though this was completely dismissed at the time - and it is now being clearly shown that tourist figures indicate Leeds merits a place on the list as well. So what possible grounds are there for maintaining the status quo other than a negative attitude towards Leeds or some strange deep-rooted conservatism? —The preceding unsigned comment was added by 84.100.164.239 (talkcontribs)
Yes, yes it is a vast right wing conspiracy.
Moving on, I think Daniel's arguments seem sound. Based on the discussion(s) above, I read that there was considerable reliance upon annual visitor numbers to determine the makeup of the cities list and that contributors were open to changes based on actual changes in annual visitor numbers. And since the representational concern is resolved by keeping the 5 cities of London, Cardiff, Belfast, Glasgow, and Edinburgh, that should not hold up a change on this page.
I do take issue, however, with Daniel's reading of the new visitor statistics. First, these are small, incomplete reproductions of the actual statistics—if we could find the actual reports for 2006, that would make this discussion much easier. Second, having added up the visitor numbers between the two sources (international and domestic) insofar as they were actually available, I get a different order of cities by visitor count. Excluding the 5 cities already mentioned, I came up with the following four: Manchester (3.402 mil.), Birmingham (3.066), Bristol (2.228), Liverpool (1.882), and Blackpool (1.787). The Blackpool number does not include international visitors, as that data was not included in either article. Next would be Leeds (1.728), Newcastle (1.615), and York (1.5). --Peter Talk 07:55, 10 November 2007 (EST)
In what way was I offensive? Andyfarrell 09:55, 10 November 2007 (EST)
"Now I'm off to make some real edits"
Please accept my apologies for the offence caused. I meant it about how I view the cities debate and expressing my view that contributors' energies could be more constructively spent for the benefit of the site, not as a dig at anyone in particular. Andyfarrell 15:21, 11 November 2007 (EST)

Map completed, sort of

After a lot of effort and occasional intense frustration I've finally completed version 1.0 of my UK map (Image:UK map.svg, be warned it's a 5 meg file). Included in the map, as well as a basic outline of the UK (plus the Isle of Man, Channel Islands and parts of France and Ireland), are:

  • Constituent country borders.
  • Country region borders.
  • County borders.
  • Important cities (marked with a square and bold text), towns and villages (marked with a circle) for each level.
  • UK rail network, with colour coded lines for the different operator, separated into major and minor routes.
  • UK Motorway network
  • Major UK airports

Things to still be added include ferry ports and routes, more inland waters, important sights and possibly geographical features and major A roads. Anyway, I thought I'd upload what's been done so far so it can be made use of and also so others can check to see if there's any mistakes or other issues. I think everything's in order, but it's always possible some things are in the wrong place or something important was left out. If there are any problems either let me know or else just fix it and re-upload it. --Paul. 21:18, 26 October 2006 (EDT)

Ferry routes added, has anyone had a chance to take a look yet? --04:29, 2 November 2006 (EST)
If nobody has any objections to the map I'll start incorporating parts of the map into country, region and county level articles in the next couple of days. --Paul. 17:49, 10 November 2006 (EST)

Where are major cities like Leeds and Liverpool on the map?

I only included the nine major cities at each map level. Liverpool and Leeds aren't listed on the cities list here, so they're not listed on the map, though they will be listed on lower level maps. It's not a product of any evil anti-Leeds conspiracy, it's simply the best way to make the map match the article content. --Paul. 08:03, 20 November 2006 (EST)

Illustrating the weakness of the list of cities - not a single city in the whole of Yorkshire!

Or East Anglia. Or the East Midlands. Or North Wales. Or Mid Wales. Or the Borders. Or South-West Scotland. Or the Highlands. Or North East Scotland. There's 9 cities, and 17 regions in mainland Great Britain alone. Elementary mathematics means that, yes, some regions won't have a major city listed. For what it's worth, however, the next version of the map will also include places listed under "Other Destinations", so York, at least, will be there. --Paul. 09:12, 20 November 2006 (EST)

A map with detail similar to this would be of more use to tourists (as the somewhat experienced Rough Guides agree with). I'm sure anyonre looking at this page will be able to match the list of cities to where they are on the map too: http://travel.roughguides.com/images/maps/map_england.gif

Well, I disagree, I think it's better to put only those cities listed in the article on the map and save other cities for lower levels. That being said if you wish to draw a map with that level of detail, maybe with Leeds at the centre in bolded, capital leters 3 times as large as any other city and with flashing arrows pointing at it, feel free. --Paul. 20:01, 20 November 2006 (EST)

Given that you then must obviously have a better know how and understanding of useful country guides than Rough Guides (oh and Lonely Planet http://www.lonelyplanet.com/worldguide/wgmaps/wg-england-5182-400x300.gif ) then I can only concede that they have established their leading reputations is spite of the fact they don't know how to make a useful map. Maybe you should write to them to complain that they place 'too many' major destinations on their country maps, since you disagree?

I don't disagree at all with how Rough Guide and Lonely Planet design their maps, they have their own aims and guidelines and I'm sure they have good reasons for adopting them. Wikitravel is different in a number of ways due to its online, open nature, one consequence of which is limiting the number of cities in each region article to stop people just adding their particular favourite city for no good reason resulting in a horribly long city list. The main map at the top is designed to be a simple way for people to see where the major cities are, while the maps in the "get in" and "get around" sections are more comprehensive and do include your pet city. I think that is the best way of doing it, but that's just my take. If you really hate the way I did it you (like anyone else) are free to change it, but please try to consider a motivation other than Leeds, Leeds, LEEDS, LEEEEEEEEEEEDS. --Paul. 05:30, 21 November 2006 (EST)


My complaint isn't that Leeds in particular isn't featured, it is that there are a host of places not even featured as a dot on the map, or a word in the article. As a first time visitor to the UK, looking at the UK Wikitravel page it is as if Leeds, Liverpool, Sheffield, York etc etc don't exist. Surely RG and LP aims and guidelines aren't that different. The use of a map is so that when planning a tour of the UK, you can look at potential paths to take, using the map as a point of refence before reading the city articles. If I want to visit say London, Edinburgh, Manchester, Birmingham, Leeds, Cardiff, Liverpool there is no map as a reference for people to work out a good path to take might be London, Birmingham, Cardiff, Manchester, Liverpool, Leeds, Edinburgh for example.

Yes there is. Besides, if you want to know how to get to Liverpool there's plenty of comprehensive information on the Liverpool page. --Paul. 07:22, 21 November 2006 (EST)

So if there is this map already, why do we need another duplicate map with less detail? Also my point is more that if I was planning to visit Manchester, and Liverpool was on the map reasonably nearby but I was unaware of what Liverpool was like, I would be more likely to look up Liverpool on Wikipedia to see if it is worth a visit. However as it is not on the map of 'main' cities, I might not know it is reasonably close to Manchester, and never think to look it up.

I just want to chime in and agree with Paul. At the country level I really think we have to just give people a taste of the possible destinations. They can then choose to take a closer look at the region and city guides to plan their trip. No offense, Leeds is a lovely place and I have plenty of friends from there, but it's really not one of the "must see" destinations for a first time visit to the UK... Maj 20:06, 21 November 2006 (EST)

"My complaint isn't that Leeds in particular isn't featured, it is that there are a host of places not even featured as a dot on the map, or a word in the article." "The use of a map is so that when planning a tour of the UK, you can look at potential paths to take, using the map as a point of refence before reading the city articles." "if I was planning to visit Manchester, and Liverpool was on the map reasonably nearby but I was unaware of what Liverpool was like, I would be more likely to look up Liverpool on Wikipedia to see if it is worth a visit. However as it is not on the map of 'main' cities, I might not know it is reasonably close to Manchester, and never think to look it up."

So until we get statistics that prove it otherwise (and i know for a fact they exist for the most recent years) Leeds and other cities will be left off the list. Fair enough, as statistical evidence, whatever I or other people may think or an objective look at the draws of each city may show, is actually the only fair way of doing it. However, the map is somewhat ridiculous. If you want to highlight the nine 'main tourist cities' in a larger/different/bold font that wouldn't be a problem, but to completely miss off major major cities such as Leeds, Liverpool, Sheffield (bigger than most of the cities included) and even Nottingham, Leicester, etc and geographically important centres such as Aberdeen/Inverness, Norwich, Dover, Southampton/Portsmouth and Plymouth/Exeter as well as the main attractions (eg York, Oxford, Bath) listed below is just ridiculous and doesn't accurately represent the UK in any shape or form.

Hey Paul - the maps look great. Thanks for your efforts. Frequenttrekker 01:18, 8 December 2006 (EST)

My happeths worth: Cities should be graded on size alone. Rough guides, Lonely planets etc., are read by a lot of people as is the wikiweb. If you say that Solihull is the cultural hub of the UK, it WILL get more visitors. It's a vicious circle. Many places get loads of tourists simply because they are famous for getting lots of tourists. All tourists are not the same. If travellers want historical places there are thousands of these, and it's best not to try and discuss this in a brief overview of UK, likewise areas of natural beauty are not generally near big towns and are best in a separate section. Big cities will usually have more culture to offer to the casual visitor than small places (but smaller places can be linked to sections on music, art, history, vibe etc.) People are on business trips etc, need to know about boring places. People into geneology need to know how to get to Little Piddlehampton churchyard.

Castles

I have removed the castles from 'Other desinations' (as great as I'm sure they are) as there are far too many worthy candidates in the UK for a front page listing, and very soon we'll be overwhelmed. Instead, I propose listing castles on a seperate page similar to the list for National Parks and Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty. Here, they can be sub-divided geographically for easy reference. Although, I'm not very familiar with this subject, if there are no objections I'll start it in a few days. Comments? WindHorse 22:27, 26 October 2006 (EDT)

Sounds fine to me. I added Warwick partly because it is a major tourist attraction, but mainly because there's an image of it on the page already, but it seemed to me odd to have two castles. I contemplated deleting the Stirling entry but there's not a huge amount to choose between the two castles. Anyway, to help a bit of the top of my head some of the most famous/best preserved castles in the UK are the Tower of London, Windsor, Warwick, Durham, Dover, Leeds (in Kent near Maidstone), Caerphilly, Caernarfon, Harlech, Edinburgh, Stirling, Eilean Donan (in the Highlands near Dornie) and Glamis.


Population Update Needed

The population of the United Kingdom has exceeded 60,000,000 and is now about 60,300,000.87.113.22.57 16:05, 1 November 2006 (EST)

Please plunge forward and edit the article to correct any outdated or incorrect information. -- Ryan 16:12, 1 November 2006 (EST)


Rough North?

"Some towns, particularly in the North have a reputation for being somewhat 'rough'." This is an unfair generalisation, and also wrong. I was born in the South, but I've lived for most of my life in the North, where the locals do seem to still fall for the myth that the South is somewhat 'posher'. Now I have moved back South, and can honestly say that I have never lived amongst such human shite in all my life. Whoever wrote that line has never been to Reading or Portsmouth!. 160.84.253.241 03:09, 2 November 2006 (EST)

"Have a reputation for being" doesn't mean the same thing as "are". --Paul. 04:27, 2 November 2006 (EST)
He makes a good point actually - people in the north are generally more accepting of Americans/Europeans/Australians than the south. I'm not sure why.. but you seem to get more Southerners making anti-US comments than in the north... MiddleEastern 09:57, 11 February 2007 (EST)

I agree. How is it fair to generalise about half of the country? If having a reputation isn't the same as being, why is it even mentioned? Typical lazy journalism about the north.

Ten cities

The Cities section seems to contain London plus a list of nine cities. Or put another way, ten cities. I've started a discussion about this issue at Wikitravel talk:Region article template#How many is nine. If you have an opinion on this, please join us there. -- Colin 13:53, 15 December 2006 (EST)

Yes, so which one would you suggest that has to go? --globe-trotter 21:19, 14 February 2010 (EST)
Newcastle upon Tyne. --Peter Talk 11:18, 15 February 2010 (EST)
Temporal rift there? The discussion started in 2006, and only now are we addressing it? ;) Anyway, it seems like it was sorted some time ago as the current article only lists 9 (if you ignore the prose including London at the top). And of the 9 there, if any had to go I would say Bristol. Newcastle is quite important for historical reason, including being at one end of Hadrian's Wall. (And I'm not just saying that as a Northerner! ;) ) Nrms 11:44, 15 February 2010 (EST)
Nrms, you wrote over the top of my comment: "From the point of view of visitors and interest, Belfast is no-brainer for deletion. However, we probably want regional spread, so one of the Scottish cities or Newcastle should go.--Burmesedays 11:35, 15 February 2010 (EST)
Unintentional - I blame the gremlins; at least a failure of the MediaWiki locking mechanism. There's an awful lot of cities on the western side of the UK. Edinburgh and Newcastle are the only ones that are on the Eastern side (oh, and London). I would say the 4 home nation capitals should be retained for equality or something. I would almost argue for removing either Manchester or Liverpool if you're going to float the regional spread argument - they are both North Western region. Nrms 11:54, 15 February 2010 (EST)
Yes, but I think London should be at the top of the list and then we'd get 10 listings. If taking into account geographical spread and the importance of the cities, I think either Bristol or Newcastle upon Tyne should go. But choosing between these two I think is quite hard. --globe-trotter 12:47, 15 February 2010 (EST)
Newcastle; of the list it has the least to interest a visitor. Andyfarrell 12:59, 15 February 2010 (EST)
No way. That would be Belfast. But it seems that one has to stay. I vote Newcastle or Glasgow (which probably also has to stay, so Newcastle!)--Burmesedays 08:44, 16 February 2010 (EST)
I'd rate Glasgow above Newcastle, Liverpool, Brum, Manchester, Belfast, or Brighton. It has heaps of architecture, history, culture, and character, and has always seemed to me a real backpacker hub. Friends of mine opened and ran a backpackers there on the premise that lots of gappers use it as a good city to stay a month or two to get jobs and replenish funds in a fun and interesting city. I've not come across this to the same degree anywhere else in the UK outside London. (PS: Agreed Belfast is uninteresting, and also agreed it'll stay due to "spread".) Andyfarrell 13:24, 16 February 2010 (EST)
There have already been at least 3 lengthy discussions about this - scroll up the page to see them. I think the current list as settled on as a sensible comrpomise. Is it really a can of worms that anyone wants to reopen? Tarr3n 05:27, 16 February 2010 (EST)
Allowing an exception to our strict nine-cities rule is the can of worms I don't want to open. LtPowers 08:38, 16 February 2010 (EST)
Agreed, no exceptions. We have had these discussions at so many places, and always been strict. --Burmesedays 08:44, 16 February 2010 (EST)

Looks like there's a strong consensus against Newcastle; Nrms's argument regarding Hadrian's Wall is mitigated somewhat by the fact that the Wall is listed in Other Destinations. Another argument in favor of Newcastle lies in a section far above here, but basically amounts to "it's a nice city with ferry service", which is all well and good but I'm not sure it's enough given our self-imposed limitation. LtPowers 13:40, 16 February 2010 (EST)

I'll accuse you all (with tongue firmly in cheek) accuse you all of being southern Brits who forget north of the Watford Gap exists, or foreiners who seem to think London is the entire of England and say I think Newcastle is something of a hidden gem. Just doing a quick comparison of the "Do" Sections, there is far more of interest in Newcastle than Bristol - the latter is mostly things I'd more expect a local to do (cinema, theatre, etc. - not what I'd look for if I were visiting said place since these are either going to because someone I am interested in seeing is there, or I could just go to my own town's cinema) whereas Newcastle has more in the way of museaums, galleries, etc which are the sort of thing that appeal to locals and visitors alike. (Incidentally, this may be due to a difference in the style of writing for the 2 cities - Bristol may have more of this in the distric-lead "See" Section.)
I'd also, once more put forward the idea that either Manchester or Liverpool should be considered for deletion (and I can think of less to do as a visitor in Manchester than Liverpool (and Newcastle), and I've been to both as a visitor) to retain a fairness to the regions - why 2 from the north west and nothing from the north east (which in some ways is in need of more people being directed there as it is possibly one of the most neglected regions when it comes to "getting things".
But at the same time, I realise we need a consensus here, rather than pandering to one person's opinion. All I am doing is putting the best case I can forward to keep somewhere I know fairly well and believe deserves to be kept (incidentally, I notice some of the people who said to remove Newcastle have not given justifications for their suggestion for whatever reason). It's also a shame we can't use the unwritten Law of common sense, but as has been suggested you then start opening many cans of worms elsewhere. Anyway, that's my opinion on the matter. If people wish to reconsider, thank you; otherwise wtih the consensus it goes. (And hope I don't accidentally obliterate anyone else's say this time!) Nrms 14:04, 16 February 2010 (EST)
I have to agree with Nrms. Newcastle has way more going for it than Bristol in terms of culture, industrial heritage and nearby natural heritage. In addition, the "geographical spread" argument is also in its favour. Bristol is only just along the road from Cardiff and is not that far from London and Birmingham. Newcastle is miles from anywhere else on the list. Tarr3n 08:55, 17 February 2010 (EST)
A Southerner?! You cad and bounder, Nrms! ;-) I'm a Lancastrian who's in love with Scotland and whose goal is to move to Cumbria. Andyfarrell 13:03, 17 February 2010 (EST)

My rationale starts pretty much at the same point as everyone else's here—the names that stand out as being less than world famous are Bristol and Newcastle (and Cardiff and Birmingham, really, but the former is a home nation capital and the latter England's second largest city). I agree with globe-trotter in that I don't think it is clear which of the two should remain.

So why Newcastle? Because it's marginally smaller, and because the principal attraction is outside the city and already listed in the ODs list.

In any rate, I don't feel too strongly about which of the two fine cities "deserves" the spot—it is more important that we just pick one and get the cities list back into conformance with policy. (And we were nearly there, Mark!) ;) --Peter Talk 18:40, 17 February 2010 (EST)

Um. Sorry. I'm not strongly in favour of either Newcastle or Bristol being kept or dropped. If more people favour keeping Bristol then fair enough. I just don't agree with the rationale, but it's no biggie. Tarr3n 07:51, 22 February 2010 (EST)
Ack. Folks it dont really matter much. Someone just delete Newcastle or Bristol, as totally uninteresting Belfast has to stay. --Burmesedays 08:00, 22 February 2010 (EST)

Emergency contact template

I propose a template, with wording like:

In any emergency, anywhere in the UK, call 999 or 112 (from a land-line if you can) and ask for Ambulance, Fire or Police (or Coastguard, if applicable) when connected. There is no charge to call the emergency services, even from from payphones.

which could be included at the start of the "stay safe" section of any article about a place in the UK.

Would people be happy with that? Is there a naming convention, for templates, which I should follow? Andy Mabbett 10:27, 29 December 2006 (EST)

That seems like a reasonable idea. When including it, you might want to put a comment to explain what it is, so it doesn't get trampled by newbies. -- Jonboy 10:47, 29 December 2006 (EST)
Why "from a land-line if you can"?, 999/112 are free from all operators. --MiddleEastern 09:55, 11 February 2007 (EST)
Because every household land-line emits correct caller ID that pinpoints the location of the line, and it will work during a power cut or most other emergencies. So there's a much reduced chance that you'll be cut off, and a better chance that they'll be able to find you. Mobiles don't always have location information available to the emergency operator and can run out of battery or their cell tower may lose power during the call if something terrible has happened (e.g. flood waters suddenly rise). This is the standard advice from the appropriate agency. tialaramex 07:25, 6 August 2007 (EDT)

It is my understanding that this is also the correct number for moutain rescue or cave rescue. (JF)

Limited visa rights for Romania and Bulgaria

Doesn't Romania and Bulgaria, newcomers to the EU have restrictions on working and immigration to the UK? --202.138.180.33 23:08, 2 January 2007 (EST)

debit/credit card acceptance in the UK

The article says that credit cards are widely accepted. In the UK, is there usually a minimum required purchase amount in order to use such cards? Can they be used in fastfood chains (eg McDonalds, KFC) without a minimum required purchase amount? --Jr traveller 02:50, 3 January 2007 (EST)

Passports and internal borders

This will sound daft to anyone English, but it's a legitimate concern that an Indian friend had before arriving, and I can see the confusion: do you need passports to move between England and Scotland? It's easy to see how the confusion arises since the UK is, almost uniquely, a country comprised of countries.

I've added this as a comment because I can't see how to incorporate it into the page such that someone looking would find it easily.

--85.145.145.242 09:41, 11 February 2007 (EST)

No, it's passport free as England, Scotland, Wales are just administrative areas, not separate entities MiddleEastern 10:00, 11 February 2007 (EST)
Added the following sentence under the section titled "Home Nations." Hope it is clear and will allay your Indian friend and other's concerns: Note that a UK visa is valid for traveling in all parts of the country and there are no internal border controls between the four 'home nations. WindHorse 10:02, 11 February 2007 (EST)


However two points connected to this. There are customs control between the UK and Channel Isles. I don't recal however there being customs control between UK and the Isle of Man, (something to do with VAT rates in the IOM being same as UK, but CI are different???). Also even using domestic flights require travellers to provide photo ID, this is probably not unusual in other countries either, but for many people a passport is probably the most convenient form of photo ID- although other forms are often accepted, e.g. new style driving licences. User:Voyager Added 13 Feb 2:35 GMT

Thanks for the feedback. I've never flown in the UK, and in fact my knowledge of the country is pretty much confined to one corner. I can't add anything about the Channel Islands because we are not sure what documentation is required. However, as they are part of the UK, I doubt very much if a passport is required, because presumably not all UK citizens have passports, and those that don't would effectively be banned from visiting a part of their own country. As for the ID requirements for internal flights, this info can be included under 'get around' as this is not specifically related to the question of documentation requirements for traveling between the four home nations, as presumably an ID is still required on a flight from, say, London to Manchester which are both in England. Anyway, I'll add that info. WindHorse 22:49, 12 February 2007 (EST)

UK terrorism

So do the recent terrorist incidents constitute a warningbox? The UK has raised it's terror alert level to "Critical", about which MI5 says: "The current threat level is assessed as CRITICAL (as of 30th June 2007). This means that an attack is expected imminently and indicates an extremely high level of threat to the UK." Typically, I don't buy into the hype, however, seeing as UK security forces have found two bomb laden cars in London, then some loons try to destroy the front door at Glasgow International Airport, and the UK government is now expecting further terrorist related incidents to occur in the UK I'd support a warningbox, preferably one that reads similar to the warning on Glasgow. -- Sapphire(Talk) • 00:28, 1 July 2007 (EDT)

I think it is fair to put up a warningbox, but I would prefer that it stays for only a very short time. "Terrorism" in my view is about as big a threat to travelers as lightning, but I suppose it is best not to go outside during a severe thunderstorm. In the long run, however, the real threat terrorism poses to travelers in the UK comes in the form of the tough questioning at Heathrow—my family was living in London, but I honestly thought they were going to bar me from entry for looking disheveled! --Peter Talk 00:48, 1 July 2007 (EDT)
I thought that it might be useful to include this information on the front page 'Travel News' as Glasgow Airport is/was closed and I'm sure that increased security will mean delays at the larger British airports and also result in longer lines waiting to enter concerts and other facilities where crowds congregate. I cannot add the info myself as the front page is locked, so I am just making a suggestion. WindHorse 02:29, 1 July 2007 (EDT)

Internal flights section

I've just hacked a lot out of the Get Around by plane section as it had grown into a big expanse of text. I've tried to remove duplicate info and unimportant things like the formal names of airports, without sacrificing useable content. As I realise someone went to some effort putting it there in the first place I wanted to mention here that things like the listings of what airlines operate to where are valued detail, they were just unwieldy in their longer form. Andyfarrell 07:36, 25 October 2007 (EDT)

Stay Safe

I felt the section was way too long and that some of the advice given in it was unnessecary and/or untrue. I live in the UK and I have never encountered many of the crimes listed nor has anyone I know. For example, public nudity?! How many countries do allow public nudity?! —The preceding unsigned comment was added by Chilperic (talkcontribs)

Agreed—and who would leave their boot unlocked? My car doesn't even have that option; I'd have to leave it wide open... If you feel an urge to cut/revise more, I'd encourage you to do so ;) --Peter Talk 00:04, 4 August 2008 (EDT)

I see the above comments are old-ish but I agree totally. I am a native but even if I'm biased I feel the advice given is a bit scaremongering - especially (from personal experience) the comment about the tube late at night. I'm tempted to go and just delete or tone down a lot of it, but it's an important page so I wanted to ask first, and if heavily prefixed with 'really nothing will go wrong, but just to be safe, beware of XXX' most of the advice is valid. Actually, I wonder if there's any point in a generic 'Western Europe' kind of safety advice for the generic 'it's not really going to happen but it's common sense not to {wander around dark alleys late at night, get involves with groups of drunk people, etc}' stuff, and maybe we could just add any specifically UK hints on this page? (Yeah, maybe the 'groups of drunk people' is a UK thing - but to be fair, even if it happens more than in other countries, most groups of drunks are not looking for trouble.) Thoughts anyone? --Zorn 20:26, 7 July 2009 (EDT)

Please go ahead and change this. If anything, the importance of the page just makes it more urgent to remove this embarrassingly dumb material ;) It could and should be cut down dramatically, especially in the cases where the information could apply just as well to any other West European country. --Peter Talk 23:30, 7 July 2009 (EDT)
OK, I've had a go. I'm not too comfortable with all the facts involve so where I didn't feel I had a good personal opinion I tried to keep the intent the same while reducing the verbiage. I think it's better but probably still too long. A few notes:
* I removed stuff about it being illegal to drink alcohol on the street, I'm not sure this is that widespread. It didn't quite seem to fit in with 'stay safe' anyway, maybe I'm wrong.
* I'm not sure about the racism stuff, maybe someone else can comment.
* Do we really need the observation that your own country might impose a higher age of consent? It's not UK specific. If the UK was notorious as a destination for Americans to come over for sex with 16 and 17 year olds I could see the point, but to the best of my knowledge it isn't. :-)
* Is the 'special relationship' bit about age of consent a bit overly detailed? But on the other hand, assuming it's true (which I don't doubt), the article would be misleading without it. On the gripping hand :-), I'd assume anyone working in an environment where 'special relationships' occur would be advised by their employer.
* Does the bit about religion in Northern Ireland/Glasgow/West Central Scotland belong on the page for the UK as a whole? I'd assume it was better to have it on their own regional pages. On the other hand, I can see a sort of argument for dispelling misconceptions here, as otherwise some visitors to the UK might just assume (eg) NI is too dangerous and never look at the NI page. I don't find it all that convincing though, if someone is interested in visiting NI but worried I think it's fair to assume they will read the NI page.
Whew, this is a long comment! --Zorn 18:59, 8 July 2009 (EDT)
I'm always in favour of applying the Fawlty Towers - bleedin obvious test. We have introductory guides tp Stay safe for new travellers, with tips on how to stay safe everywhere. We can assume that the person reading the destination guide has a normal level of awareness of personal safety, and we should alert them to specific risks and practical measures to stay safe at the destination.
The religion stuff for Glasgow belongs in that article. Its is a specific issue for there. The bit about Northern Ireland, I don't really even agree with. I've never found the Irish to be reluctant to discuss politics - except possibly Republicans seem to assume that English have a set political agenda, so I think there could be more words there, but I agree with your comments.
If the age of consent was abnormally high, then I could possibly see this is a potential specific risk, but it isn't and it's not. If you think they may arrest a 20-year-old with a 17-year-old partner at the NI border, then this may bear mentioning. I would think this unlikely. The special relationship stuff is too specific.
I think we should make mention on age of consent on the Stay safe page as a general issue. If you are travelling with a partner under the age of 18, you should make some checks, I guess, to avoid hassles. I also think we need to make mention of the fact that you can't take a bottle of wine to have with your picnic in Hyde Park without being hassled by the local constabulary, (but getting plastered in the pub on the corner is a a fine British tradition). --inas 19:30, 8 July 2009 (EDT)
OK, I've hacked it down a bit more. I put something on the talk page for Glasgow so people in the know can decide if the religion issue warrants a mention there, now that it's removed here. --Zorn 20:15, 8 July 2009 (EDT)

Discussion of Nationality

The essay on what to call a British, Irish, Black, Asian, Scot, is a poor introduction to the UK for a tourist. The general rule seems to be call people the precise term if known, else call them British, but be tread a little carefully around Northern Ireland. I've tried to put that into a few short paras in the article, but if someone thinks they can improve, by all means go ahead. I really think the nationality section as is, and all the forms of possible offence that can be caused, needs serious improvement, to not cause serious offence to the reader! --Inas 22:08, 21 September 2008 (EDT)

I've always found it strange that people feel offended by which nationality they are called. Really, who cares whether someone thinks you are from a neighboring country or region... Anyway, rant aside... I think it is great that you have cut down the info to essentials, though from my knowledge of the UK, I noticed a few details that could perhaps be tweaked. For example, the UK passport states Citizen of Great Britain and Northern Island (or something like that)... Therefore, I assume that Northern Island is part of the UK, but not part of Great Britain. Secondly, I've heard a lot of Brits referring to themselves as coming from the UK... so although, as you state, UK is not used in adjective form to describe someone's place of birth, it is commonly used in a noun form... I've amended accordingly... However, please feel free to change back if you think I'm wrong... I have not spent much time in the UK in recent years, so situations (including my memory capacity) change... Cheers for your efforts... WindHorse 23:08, 21 September 2008 (EDT)


Please note in a standard UK passport a person's nationality is "British Citizen". Yes it is "The United Kingdom Of Great Britain and Northern Ireland" (ie England, Scotland ,Wales and the six counties of Northern Ireland.) The people of The Isle of Mann and the Channel Islands are also British citizens but passports issued there do not have the heading "European Union", above that of The UK on the front cover,as these areas are NOT part of The EU. All countries of The European Union issue passports with a standard format in the same colour. A passport with the EU heading entitles the holder to various social security benefits and health care in other EU states, as well as the right to reside and work in the EU area. To work and reside in another EU state, other than The UK, people from The Channel Islands and The Isle of Mann must have a connection to the UK mainland through a parent or spend a period of time resident on The UK mainland first.

Destinations

There's a useful website at http://www.britishdestinations.wikispaces.com that has a lot of detailed destination information and a small list of itineraries. At times, it has far better detail than Wikitravel. Just thought I might share it! It'd help with planning where to visit!

Internet

With 3G data being available in the UK for years now, I'm surprised that the Internet section here is still focussed on GPRS. I also think there is too much detail on getting broadband connected. There are plenty of other sources of info for those who want to install permanent ADSL connections. Does someone have the information, can you just pick up a prepaid SIM with 3G data in the UK? If so, how much and where? If not, I'll just proceed to update what I know.

I agree that a lot of that detail needs to go. The section is way too long. Texugo 00:29, 4 March 2009 (EST)
My vote for removing info on ADSLs at all, as impractical and thus useless for most travellers. --DenisYurkin 18:22, 4 March 2009 (EST)

Getting around by train

There's now an excellent guide to Rail travel in the UK on Wikitravel, mostly thank to Jamesbrownontheroad. Would it make sense to reduce the information in the main UK article down to a summary with a link to Rail travel in the UK? And if so would Jamesbrownontheroad be prepared to do the summary as he clearly knows what he's talking about? Tarr3n 04:22, 29 April 2009 (EDT)

I'd be more than happy to help out - although additional voices are most welcome. Jamesbrownontheroad 08:00, 1 May 2009 (EDT)
OK, I've imported some of the key sections from the Rail travel in the UK travel topic, editing them and making them a bit shorter. Some of the original content from this page has been retained or edited slightly. Hopefully this makes the structure a bit easier to comprehend. Jamesbrownontheroad 11:24, 10 May 2009 (EDT)
Much better - good job. Tarr3n 10:32, 12 May 2009 (EDT)

Visa Regulations

Why are the visa regulations for citizens of French Guiana, Guadeloupe and Réunion listed as different? I thought that if you were a citizen of one of these overseas departments of France, then you are a citizen of France itself as they are integral parts of the country? Should these cases be removed or am I mistaken? —The preceding comment was added by 94.169.108.112 (talkcontribs) .

Yeah, just sounds plain wrong to me. Probably worthwhile checking the whole list. --inas 20:42, 7 July 2009 (EDT)

Why the United Kingdom?

Why the over use of the term United Kingdom? When the formal name is Great Britain and Northern Ireland (short form), United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland (long form) a follow on from Great Britain and Ireland (short form), United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland (long form) Mr Taz 08:22, 17 October 2009 (EDT)

We don't use formal names; we use common names. The United Kingdom is routinely referred to as such in the media and in general conversation. Wikipedia agrees. LtPowers 09:35, 17 October 2009 (EDT)
Because we are not Wikipedia (or a encyclopaedia for that matter), and can happily slap the most commonly used term on countries and none of these names really works well in travel writing. Feel free to exchange a few instances with Britain if you really need to, but generally we try to stay clear of the pointless hair splitting that is endemic over at wikipedia. Coincidentally though, that article uses United Kingdom and UK almost exclusively throughout as well.
The common naming disputes of those islands is excessive silly from an outside perspective, and it is completely and utterly impossible to satisfy everyone's opinion. If we start writing "A common dish in the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland is fish and chips" someone else will come along and call us idiots - it's interminable. --Stefan (sertmann) Talk 09:47, 17 October 2009 (EDT)
i think Mr Taz means that the term of the term United Kingdom that is over used covering up alot!!! not pointless hair splitting also Stefan (sertmann) "A common dish in the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland is fish and chips" it's "A common dish in Great Britain and Northern Ireland is fish and chips" you use the 'short form' or 'common name' as "Republic of France just France"
There are far, far more important things than this silliness. Let others obsess while we actually create some decent travel guides.--Burmesedays 12:24, 17 October 2009 (EDT)
Yeah, except UK is a full 28 characters, and United Kingdom 16 charters shorter to write, conveys the same meaning and neither will choke your tongue if you want to read up a paragraph to your spouse out in the living room - practical that if you want to French kiss afterwards. In essence; "A common dish in Great Britain and Northern Ireland is fish and chips" seems every bit as silly to me. The travllers comes first here, not disgruntled locals. --Stefan (sertmann) Talk 12:45, 17 October 2009 (EDT)
This is absurd. No one, locals or otherwise, says "Great Britain and Northern Ireland" regularly in normal conversation. LtPowers 13:47, 17 October 2009 (EDT)

Common Travel Area infobox incorrect

Recent changes to the Common Travel Area infobox have made it incorrect and nonsensical. "If you enter the United Kingdom through Ireland, you will pass through passport control at your port of entry into Ireland..."! When you enter the UK, you do not pass through a "port of entry into Ireland", obviously! In any case, you can enter Ireland by driving across the border with no passport control. Nurg 19:50, 7 November 2009 (EST)

Free Health Care..

I think we need to be careful with some of the statements made here about free health care in case of emergency, and free health care to british citizens.

It would be very unwise to head off to the UK without medical travel insurance, thinking that you will be entitled to free health care in case of an emergency. Once you are admitted to hospital, you will be charged. You are also charged if you are a British citizen not resident in the UK. --inas 23:14, 18 January 2010 (EST)

Yes. The point should be that emergency A+E treatment is "free" for all. But if you become an in-patient, then of course you will need to pay (as in fact, do all British residents via compulsory contributions). --Burmesedays 23:20, 18 January 2010 (EST)

Home nations quick bar

So an anon user recently reintroduced the quickbar in the Northern Ireland article, which had been removed after some debacle over which flag to use a while back. I think we need to make a decision either way - as it is currently present in the Wales and Scotland articles. Personally I don't give a damn if we use or not, as long as we're consistent --Stefan (sertmann) talk 18:17, 20 February 2010 (EST)

It's also used for England. I don't know that I personally like them (by comparison, we don't have them for every state in Germany or for the autonomous regions of China, or any similar sub-national division I'm aware of), but right now consistency is leaning towards their use. - D. Guillaime 18:24, 20 February 2010 (EST)
Surprise, surprise, I want them all gone, and I actually think we had a pretty good consensus to remove them at Talk:Northern_Ireland#Flag issue. We had an abortive policy discussion here on this issue as well. I personally wish Wikitravel would get out of the business of "recognizing" state sovereignty, in order to avoid opening these proverbial cans of worms, but no one has joined me on that proposal. I worry that "recognizing" "sub-nations" like these (which clearly are not sovereign states), would open up yet another can. Anyway, I think Ian said it best:
Quickbars add very little in a country article, and add even less to these provincial articles. Just about everything on the quickbar is the same as that for the UK.
Visa info, government, tld, phone codes, currency, time zone, language—all will be the same as the UK. And if we do use quickbars for these articles, should we then "recognize" and give quickbars to all the 40 or so autonomous republics of Russia? --Peter Talk 11:35, 21 February 2010 (EST)
I agree. Get rid of them from all the "Home Nations". Tarr3n 07:48, 22 February 2010 (EST)
Agreed, quick bars should only be for countries or de facto countries. The home nations are sub-divisions of a country. --globe-trotter 12:29, 26 February 2010 (EST)
Don't ever introduce yourself to a Wikitraveller from Wales or Scotland. You may not survive:-). I agree with not having Quick Bars but for Peter's reasons not yours. Shep 13:36, 26 February 2010 (EST)
Umm? My position is exactly the same as Peter's. I could have used a better word, maybe I should've said that the home nations are not sovereign states (in my above wording of "country", I implied country and sovereign state to be synonymous). --globe-trotter 15:03, 26 February 2010 (EST)
Get rid of them of course. I don't much like them for countries, let alone sub-divisions. The United Kingdom is one country and should have one quickbar, simple as that. --Burmesedays 01:51, 27 February 2010 (EST)
Shep's already gently suggested some sensitivity but I think you missed the hint, Burmese. Scotland begins "Scotland is a country..." so it isn't as "simple as that". Let's stick to the quickbar. Andyfarrell 04:43, 27 February 2010 (EST)
Sensitivities about things like are totally pointless at a travel site. It is hard to justify having one quickbar without mentioning that the UK is one country. I could have been oh so PC and have said the United Kingdom is a sovereign state with four constituents. In other words, in plain English, it is one country with sub-divisions :). --Burmesedays 06:09, 27 February 2010 (EST)
Well, technically, I believe it is one Nation with four countries (or, perhaps, three plus Northern Ireland). But let's not get embroiled in semantics! Shep 12:31, 27 February 2010 (EST)

UK Map

I have been meaning to get moving on a Wikitravel style UK map for some time, and am now seriously turning my mind to it. The current map shows the divisions just fine, but such a major travel destination should have a fully blown Wikitravel map. A few general points for which I would like some feedback:

  • Roads. The WT standard is to use red and yellow for major roads. See for example Vietnam (somewhat randomly!). For the UK I think we should use the local Ordnance Survey standard of blue for motorways and green for A-roads. eg [2]. Or am I being too parochial? Thoughts please.
  • Airports. Which ones should be shown with an airport icon (aside from the obvious)? I am bit out of touch as to which of the provincial UK airports are the important ones these days.
  • Does anyone know of a source of SVG files for local motorway and A-road shields? I drew my own A-road shields and used them here, but they are by no means perfect.

--Burmesedays 08:39, 27 February 2010 (EST)

Many of Wikitravel's important destinations have been dealt with first, but this led to the curious situation of countries like Suriname having a better map than the United Kingdom. I just fixed up the region pages of the UK and all the home nations to make these more in line with the better looking articles on Wikitravel. Answering your questions, it seems fine to indeed use the British colors as they are used everywhere in the UK. --globe-trotter 09:41, 27 February 2010 (EST)
I think your A-road shields look fine. Blue motorways and green A-roads sound clear to me, but I'm British so maybe I'm being parochial too. Re Airports, I assume the obvious ones are Heathrow, Gatwick, Luton, Stansted, Birmingham, Manchester, Glasgow, Edinburgh, Prestwick. Beyond those the main ones I come across for the budget operators are East Midlands, Leeds Bradford, Doncaster Sheffield, Liverpool, and Bristol. Depending how many you want to clutter your map with your next tranche of contenders may be Blackpool, Newcastle, Durham Tees, Cardiff, Bournemouth, Inverness, Norwich, Humberside. Andyfarrell 14:57, 27 February 2010 (EST)
I have uploaded the first version.
  • It is busy I know, but I think that is unavoidable unless we leave off important detail (eg main rail routes and national parks).
  • The northern centre of England is especially tricky, and I have sadly had to omit large cities like Sheffield and Bradford.
  • I have also tried to head off the usual complaints before they start by including more places than is absolutely necessary :).
  • I may well still add road shields, but otherwise I am quite happy with this as a first go.
Any comments/criticisms gratefully received.--Burmesedays 00:23, 1 March 2010 (EST)
Looks great! And not too busy—actually, you could get away with enlarging the in-article thumb to make it more readable, since the map is narrow. That would make it easier to spot the airports, in particular. I would recommend a darker blue for the motorways, as the current mix of blue & white (?) look a bit like our generic water colour. If you do manage to get the route shields on for the most important motorways, you can grab the shield SVGs from Image:London districts map.svg. --Peter Talk 01:12, 1 March 2010 (EST)
Lovely. Just some debugging to offer:
  • South Yorks NP should be North York Moors NP
  • Caingorm NP should be Cairngorm NP
  • New Forest NP is missing its name
  • Why do some NPs have a blue marker while others don't?
  • Luton and Stanstead airports seem to share a symbol somewhere between their positions
  • M40 ends on M4 rather than crossing M25
  • M54 is green rather than blue, perhaps this is to avoid obscuring text
  • M180 is green rather than blue
  • Northern sections of A1(M) are now mostly completed to motorway, old map source?
Andyfarrell 03:13, 1 March 2010 (EST)

Thanks Peter and Andy! All much appreciated. I will put some of those points right immediately, and others might take a few days.

  • I have enlarged the in-article thumbnail to 400 px width.
  • Motorway colours. I thought someone might say that :). I have tried to match the British OS standard of blue with a white line (or lines). If it really looks too much like a river (?), then can change of course. I would then suggest leaving the idea of blue altogether, and probably go for our normal garish red.
  • Will do on shields. I had forgotten all about the London map as a source.
  • On motorways. Andy, you can tell it is is while since I lived in the UK huh? :) I will bring them up to date. The A1 will forever be a crappy road in my mind. Will correct the others you mention as well.
  • National Parks. Thanks for spotting the mistakes/omissions with labels. The blue square signifies a listed Other Destination (that is standard on all WT-style maps).
  • Luton and Stansted. I have those correctly placed in my source file, but must have output the png file before I finished placing the airports. It was the last job.

Thanks again. --Burmesedays 03:44, 1 March 2010 (EST)

Great work Burmesedays. A few wee points from me.
Do you fancy taking on England, Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales next? Tarr3n 07:21, 1 March 2010 (EST)
Ferry routes, more guidance please! I really don't know the full score. I also think I should probably show some of the east coast routes to Europe. Which ones are most important? Harwich to The Hook? What about those out of Newcastle and others?
I was intending to move on to the the four home nations yes..... It will not be super quick though due to other things I am working on.
There does appear to be a little bit of motorway in NI yes. I will get on to that.
Pembrokeshire NP is so small I am not sure it will even show on the map. I will have a look. Often WT country maps only show the National Parks that are specifically listed as ODs, but I am trying to be complete with this one if at all possible. Thanks again --Burmesedays 08:11, 1 March 2010 (EST)
Here [3] is a map with all the routes from the UK. Obviously listing all of them is too much, but Hull to the Benelux and Newcastle to Scandinavia I think is particularly important. Also, I agree that the roads look too much like rivers with this color. --globe-trotter 08:40, 1 March 2010 (EST)
I thought the Harwich and Felixstowe routes to Benelux were the really busy ones? I am very out of touch though as it is 10 years since I have set foot on a UK ferry.--Burmesedays 10:50, 1 March 2010 (EST)
The non-Brit opinion seems against the motorway colour. There is no point changing the tone of blue as that defeats the purpose of matching the British OS colours. And no point keeping the green either as partial matching also makes no sense. So back to the garish red and yellow it is. That's a shame as the blue and green are very pleasing graphically, but there is a lot to be said for consistency across all WT country maps. --Burmesedays 11:02, 1 March 2010 (EST)
Oh no, I'm all for using the British colours on the roads, since they mean something well understood! I just think a darker shade of blue is necessary. I used one on the London map, although I made it a little purplish for reasons I don't remember.
But changing the tone of blue will defeat the object. And making it darker will be tending towards the normal WT river (as opposed to water) colour and if anything, will cause more confusion I would say.--Burmesedays 11:33, 1 March 2010 (EST)
I'll get to work on a Wales map—sounds like fun. --Peter Talk 11:11, 1 March 2010 (EST)
For Wales Peter you will find this svg more than useful. All the Welsh county subdivisions are drawn as sub-layers of the main Wales layer. The NPs are all there as well. I did not use this SVG for my purpose, but for sub-regions I think this one will be perfect.--Burmesedays 11:27, 1 March 2010 (EST)
I'm not sure I agree on road colours. Yes blue for m-ways and green for A-roads is pretty standard on most UK mapping (not just the OS), however standardisation across Wikitravel is a good thing in my view, and I think the map will be of most use to visitors from outside the UK unused to the local standard. Tarr3n 11:23, 1 March 2010 (EST)

It's a well-crafted map, to be sure, although I think it serves to reinforce my position against maps that try to put too much information into one place. I realize I'm in the minority, however. =) LtPowers 11:46, 1 March 2010 (EST)

 :). It is at the limit I think. I certainly would not add more; indeed for reasons of avoiding too much clutter I have omitted items that I would like to on there (notably largish cities like Sheffield and Leicester). --Burmesedays 11:54, 1 March 2010 (EST)
On ferries, I think they are well covered just below in the separate map Image:UK_get_in_map.png and so omitting them from your map may be a way of reducing the clutter. Unfortunately that's not in the crowded sections onshore.
One further small correction - it's North York Moors, ie no S in York. I suspect your original error on the name of this park crept in from Image:UK_parks.png as source? That calls them the South York Moors, I wonder if a mapmaker could easily amend? Pretty please? :-) Andyfarrell 12:26, 1 March 2010 (EST)
Comparing it to other country maps, it does look, er, fully featured. Many others omit the airports. And you have a lot of detail by including both smaller cities and the Other Destinations. Perhaps lesser destinations like Chester, Carlisle, Nottingham, Ipswich, Exeter, could be given the bullet. Or will that suggestion arouse a war now? :-) I also think road numbers add little to these country maps, eg New Zealand, where the space would be better used listing the Other Destinations. Andyfarrell 12:40, 1 March 2010 (EST)
You might have gathered that I am a fan of "fully featured" maps, so my answer is no :). Nothing to stop somebody else amending it of course. I have never understood why folks leave off the airport(s) when the icon is on the country/region map template and obviously therefore intended for use. Take off the smaller towns and the value of the map is lessened I think. Many of them are there to give a balanced sense of geography (those little Scots towns for example). I have no time whatsoever for nationalist bollocks, nor do I wish to favour any towns, it is purely a matter of sensible balance on the map.
The two biggest cluttering items are the train lines and the national parks, neither of which I believe should go.--Burmesedays 19:45, 1 March 2010 (EST)

Looking at this more, I would recommend: 1) taking emphasis off the ferry lines, which you can do simply by decreasing their transparency; 2) darkening the OD names; and 3) using bolder colours for the Channel Islands and the Isle of Man (as with Bali in the Indonesia map).

You might also want to see what it would look like with the not-quite-proverbial "hairy dash" for the railroads. It sometimes looks better on regions maps when you don't have room to make the line wide. I definitely recommend that last procedure discussed there (not the mid-stroke version), using black for both lines, make the dashes further spread out, and the dashed line wider than the solid. Image:Tajikistan regions map.png and Image:Uzbekistan regions map.png are both recent maps of mine which turned out well with that type of railroad. --Peter Talk 21:33, 1 March 2010 (EST)

Thanks everyone and I think I have incorporated all of the proofing checks and the style advice except:
  • I really dont like hairy railway lines. Instead, I have changed the nature of the dashed pattern. I think this does the job of making the railways less dominant but still visible. Very good calls Peter on the font colour for ODs, and reducing the opacity of the ferry routes. That really helped.
  • A few of the motorway/a-road distinctions in northern England might still be a little inaccurate. But I don't think it matters. The big change was the stretch of the A1-M which I think is now correct.
  • Through gritted teeth I have used bright colours for the Isle of Man and Channel Islands. Bright colours offend all of my graphic sensibilities, but you can at least now distinguish those pesky little islands.--Burmesedays 22:37, 1 March 2010 (EST)
All credit to you for an excellent addition to the site, and I'm very happy to have bits of opinion ignored when it is you who's doing all the work. Just spotted one more oops - the M20 carries on too far and crosses the channel. Andyfarrell 04:29, 2 March 2010 (EST)
Ever see that episode of Top Gear where Jeremy drove the "Toybota" across the channel? That was my homage =).
It is nice when folks appreciate that drawing these maps is actually quite a lot of work, although you do get much faster as you get used to the process. The biggest battle is the crappy piece of open source, free licence software we all use. It demonstrates very well why Illustrator and Coreldraw sell so well despite costing so much. It is like driving a giveaway Trabant when a (admittedly pricey) Ferrari is available. --Burmesedays 04:52, 2 March 2010 (EST)
Hello - a few comments from me on a generally excellent map.
- Hadrian's Wall is a bit too far north - it actually runs from approx. Carlisle to Newcastle rather than along the present day boundary.
- The A303 continues to the M3 at Basingstoke rather than ending at the A34 as shown. Perhaps this seems a very minor point, but I do think the straighter line that would result from correcting this would highlight the A303 much better as a sensible route between London and Devon/Cornwall - which it certainly is.
- Railways - I would be inclined to include London-Ipswich-Norwich, as this is also recognised as an 'Intercity'-standard route out of London. The Birmingham-Liverpool route should probably have a branch to Manchester (which is more important than the Liverpool route). Personally I would also include London to Brighton, Oxford, Cambridge, Portsmouth and Southampton, and also Exeter-Bristol-Birmingham-Leeds, and possibly Leeds-Hull - all these are routes of primary importance in the network (although obviously there is an argument that this may be too much clutter). In Scotland, the main route to Inverness is from Perth via Aviemore, whereas the Aberdeen to Inverness line is not of the same importance as the other lines on the map.
- Ferries - Possibly worth including Pembroke/Fishguard-Rosslare as the southernmost Irish Sea crossings, also perhaps Dover-Boulogne so that the complete range of 'short sea' French crossings is shown. Other Channel crossings that could be considered are Newhaven-Dieppe, Poole/Weymouth-Channel Islands, and Plymouth-Roscoff providing a useful western Channel link. Meanwhile the Newcastle-Bergen route shown was withdrawn in 2008.
Hope this is of some use. Cenred 12:13, 7 March 2010 (EST)
Many thanks Cenred and there is nothing to ague with there. Let me see what I can fit on in the way of train lines. Hadrian's Wall is embarrassing! I really did know that :). Thanks again. --Burmesedays 08:02, 9 March 2010 (EST)
No problem. One other thing - on closer inspection I see the ferry line heading east from Dover goes to Oostende. To the best of my knowledge this no longer operates from Dover (there is a route from Ramsgate, but I believe this is mainly focussed on freight traffic). However there is a frequent general-purpose route from Dover to Dunkerque. Thanks. :) Cenred 12:03, 9 March 2010 (EST)
This is a very good map, but at the risk of adding too much info, I would suggest the following might be added:
  • Ferries - These are shown to Orkney and Shetland, but not the Hebrides. There is no need to show most of these, particularly the shorter routes, but possibly could add: Ullapool - Stornoway, Uig - Tarbet, Uig - Lochmaddy, Oban - Castlebay.
  • Railways - The East Coast Main Line is missing South of York, it goes through Doncaster and Grantham. There are no lines in North Wales, as this connects with the Dublin ferry at Holyhead it might be useful. In Ireland, could have the Belfast - Dublin and Belfast - Londonderry lines. In Scotland Glasgow - Fort William, as there is an itinerary - West Highland Railway; Edinburgh - Dundee; Invernesk - Kyle and Inverness - Thurso. The Eurostar route looks wrong leaving London, it now goes from St Pancras vis Ebbsfleet, and so would almost be touching the letters L,O,N of London on the map. AlasdairW 19:01, 9 March 2010 (EST)

I have added many of those recent suggestions and uploaded the amended map. Please do not suggest any more additions as the map is now on the verge of being far too busy. If there are any mistakes though, please do let me know. Thanks again everyone for the great feedback on this map, and for updating my rather out of date knowledge.--Burmesedays 22:32, 9 March 2010 (EST)

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