This Week’s work on the website

Most of the activity this week has been “backstage” but solid progress has been made towards finishing the new Guild Website.

Much of it is “snagging” but obviously when we go live, and ringers from outside the Guild come and have a look around, we don’t want lumps and bumps to give them the impression that the Guild is a place that tolerates shoddy workmanship!

You said that the photos didn’t all display properly

So we are changing the way ALL the photos are displayed, to solve the problem. There are over 200 tower pages, and they have to be altered individually, so this is one reason we appear to be moving slowly at the moment. We have reached “G” in the alphabet though. Onwards and Upwards.

You said you wanted uk to redirect properly

So we are moving the entire email system over into the new website in this phase, rather than leaving it until a few months’ time. It’s added about 3 weeks to the development time at this point but it will mean the retiring webmasters can have a break!!! Well deserved!!!

You said that the words used in the small BW menus were unfriendly

These drive the multiple news feeds so they are really important. A lot of them were shortened forms of tower names or phrases. So, we tested using longer phrases, with spaces, and then changed all the offending ones.

You said you didn’t want any spam through the new system

So we went and analysed the performance of the spam filters that have been running in candsbellringers for 3 years, worked out what the strengths and weaknesses were, and fine tuned the filters on this site. RESULT – no rubbish. At all. (the web team see a copy of all the emails you get, and all of them have been fine).

You said you don’t want your email address to go online

So every “tower contact” and officer who has given the web team permission to use their emai address, now has their own web page which they can quote on posters, other websites, in emails etc etc. The page name is easy to work out – if your name is Fred Bloggs then your page will be

You said you wanted to be able to post news JUST onto a tower page…

… and not include it in the front page news feed. We have done that. So you have total control over where your news goes.

You said that the different layouts of the Tower Pages was “a bit random”

And this one is a REAL challenge because one of the underlying philosophies of the website is that each band can have a completely bespoke page or several pages if they wish. But as part of the final pass of the tower pages before we go live, we are making sure all towers have the minimum grid of contact/ringing times/location etc, either on their single page, or on one of their pages if there is a “zone”.

You said that you wanted lots of pages for your tower and surely that’s impossible?

We said Absolutely we can do that! Go for it! BUT wait until after we go live (probably in the New Year) so that we can work with you to build a really nice, useable, friendly, “zone” for your information. We need to think about how the menus and news feeds will work and how we can have a bespoke zone within a consistent site. It’s a challenge, but this was the whole reason for building the site – to bring  news and information into one place where people can easily find it.

You found broken links

Most of these have to be mended individually. So it’s laborious but they matter, so it’s worth the effort. In the process, we have rationalised the names of a lot of pages to make them easier to manage, long term.

And there will be other snags but….

Please keep the feedback coming. We want this site to be the best we can make it,

….Going Live Soon!


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