Welcome to Wymondham on the Web!

Wymondham is a village near Melton Mowbray in the county of Leicestershire in the East Midlands of England. We have a windmill which is a popular visitor attraction, and a pub with an award-winning restaurant. The village also has a primary school and a post office with shop. The rest of this site offers a comprehensive collection of photos and sketches plus history, including the village's connection with early Stilton Cheese production.

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Webmaster duties performed by jake@wymondham.zzn.com
Jake Young, 53 Main Street, Wymondham,
Melton Mowbray, Leics LE14 2AG, UK
Telephone 01572 787676 within UK
or 441572 787676 from overseas
Our time-zone is GMT/BST which is EST/EDT plus 5 hours

Why have a text-only page?

...To get back to basics and remove some of the world-wide wait from the wibbly-wobbly Web. You'll save a few seconds (in the delivery time for a less complex page of fewer bytes) -- or days and maybe weeks (the time taken to create and test a complex page).

My design choices across the rest of this site might not meet with your approval. If this page looks awful to you, then you should try changing the settings for your browser preferences. At a bare minimum you can choose the text and background colours in every browser I know of. If the line-length is too long, then re-size the "viewport" (window) -- there's no need to run a program fullscreen all the time! For more sophisticated control of the page display, users can apply their own style sheet.

Along with not setting any colours for the pages, I've used minimal markup which shouldn't cause any problems for older software, smaller screen sizes etc. Now all I have to do is discipline myself to provide the text-only pages first, and then squirt them into templates for the fancier versions.

The information content of a webpage used to be of greatest importance, and its presentation was substantially in the hands of the reader. Commercial interests got in the way, but there have always been AnyBrowser backlashes rumbling away, including one in October 2001 from Tim Berners-Lee, the "father of the Web":

I have fought since the beginning of the Web for its openness: that anyone can read Web pages with any software running on any hardware. This is what makes the Web itself. This is the environment into which so many people have invested so much energy and creativity. When I see any Web site claim to be only readable using particular hardware or software, I cringe - they are pining for the bad old days when each piece of information needed a different program to access it.
The "best viewed with" button is bad, but there is worse. Worse are sites which not only ask you but which force you to use software which they control, so they will effectively have control over all your browsing -- even when you are browsing someone else's site.

Part of the problem is the fault-tolerance of Internet Explorer, and the attitude that "if it works OK in IE4 and above we've done our job". Your browser and its related services probably sent you to this site if you are looking for maps for Wymondham, Norfolk. You're welcome, but those maps weren't at this site initially and it's cost me several hours to provide them. In return, we get shoddy sites made with and for Microsoft software in their attempt to take control of the Web.

There aren't text-only equivalents (yet) for many pages at this site, as most are low-graphics in any case. However, quite complex table layouts are used, and these can noticeably slow the display of pages on older equipment, so the navigation "hubs" (this page and the sitemap) are the first pages to have text-only versions.

I generally use filename.ext 8.3 filenames, which are DOS- and Win3.1-friendly, but the text-only versions will have txt added. For example, the text-only version of sitemap.htm will be sitemaptxt.htm. This should allow you to quickly change between different versions of a page without, I hope, causing too many problems to users of DOS and early Windows who wish to save pages. If the site was being started from scratch, the more complex pages would be the ones to get the long filenames.

For fastest browsing of the remainder of this site you can disable image loading and then choose any image you wish to download and display. The Opera browser makes this easy. If you find a site with no ALT text to describe images before downloading, it's a good idea to email the site owner or webmaster and ask for their inclusion, especially if their lack hampers your navigation.

Enjoy the rest of your visit!

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