Sunday 26th April 2015 – Initial (Thinks I Know What I am Doing) Entry

Since I set up the idea of using a blog to get the Wiltshire OPC Project to reach out to more people I have been pondering as to what I should write about.

I thought perhaps it would be a good idea to tell people a little bit more about the project and the people who contribute.

At various times I shall ask random Wed Designers, Admin, OPC’s, Transcribers and Registered Users what they think of the project and why they became involved.    Firstly I need to get the Blog spread far and wide so please help spread the word and follow us (a link to the blog is found on the home page of the website)

To start off the process I think you may like to know a little more about me and my interest in the Project.

As many of you will be aware my name is Teresa and for my sins became admin to the web site around 2006.  Until then Susan Penter was sailing the ship alone and due to work commitments and other interests found herself  bogged down with submissions to load to the parish pages.  Since those early days Susan has built a pretty decent website considering we are unfunded and do not ask for financial contributions and stuff like that.

I persuaded Susan to allow me to help with the workload as I had what I consider a good sounding in Admin having worked for a Major National Company before I married and started a family.

My interest in the site came from the fact that like so many of us I started to delve into my family tree and having been born in Wiltshire naturally the research let me back to my birth county.   My ex husband said my “obsession” was the reason why he is now my ex husband and was nothing to do with the fact that he found pastures new.

The site has grown and grown since its conception and is still developing each day with more and more items of interest added.   We now how around 80 OPC’s covering numerous parishes and several transcribers.  We have in the region of about 2000 registered and returning users so we must be doing something right.  Susan was able to eventually concentrate on keeping the website online and secure whilst I and the admin team which has slowly built up concentrate on getting the submissions published.

My day starts with checking e-mails to see what gems have been submitted overnight – so many recently that I have had to put them into a folder system and prepare for upload in slots – each submitter has their own folder and I have a rota which I follow if when I get to the name on the rota and there are items in their folder these get loaded, sadly this may mean a delay in publishing but I have to work in a way that suits me as we really are getting so much in.   Plus of course in between uploading I have my own parishes to work on as well as transcribing for other parishes too.

I am lucky in that I have time on my hands having retired from work – although the site can see me working a 14 hour day !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I am also lucky that we have a few admin staff propping my efforts up and keeping me inline.  Cathy Sedgwick checks all the uploads for me to make sure the links work amongst other tasks that she volunteered to take on, John Pope is busy loading photographs to various galleries (mainly military related graves and memorials donated recently) and Brian Watts who has recently joined the admin team helping out where and when he can.

It is difficult to let everyone know what is new so I use Twitter, Facebook and now the Blog to let people know but it’s not easy to name everything that is loaded so if you have a parish of interest keep going back to see what surprises may be there.

I often put out requests for help and new OPC’s to join us – ideally I would love to get enough people to adopt all our parishes but sadly we are but a few and can’t take on them all between us.  We do get people adopting parishes but I would love to see more.  Transcribers are not such a problem as we have a steady stream who volunteer and work at their own pace.

The website is only a success because of the team effort and over the weeks I am going to sing their praises.

For a list of items added each month and a full list of items published to the site please go to the home page and look at the statistics section.

This weeks randomly chosen parish of the week is Chippenham

See you all next week

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