Wickham Market, Suffolk

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Wickham Market, Suffolk

Andy Townsend
Is anyone familiar with this area?  Someone's mentioned on IRC that
Wickham Market has been changed from town to village and back a couple
of times:

http://osm.mapki.com/history/node.php?id=114148812

Obviously it's been "town" more than village (and the person who added
it as such was/is pretty local) - but is that still correct?  I'll
comment on the latest change about this thread so that everyone's aware
of it.

Best Regards,

Andy




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Re: Wickham Market, Suffolk

Mark Goodge


On 06/09/2018 22:00, [hidden email] wrote:

> Is anyone familiar with this area?  Someone's mentioned on IRC that
> Wickham Market has been changed from town to village and back a couple
> of times:
>
> http://osm.mapki.com/history/node.php?id=114148812
>
> Obviously it's been "town" more than village (and the person who added
> it as such was/is pretty local) - but is that still correct?  I'll
> comment on the latest change about this thread so that everyone's aware
> of it.

It has a parish council that has not chosen to style itself as a town
council. So, officially, it's a village.

http://wickhammarket.onesuffolk.net/

It's also a bit small for a town. According to Wikipedia (which also
considers it a village) it has a population of just over 2,000. I
wouldn't normally consider that a town.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wickham_Market

However, local usage may be different. The real question is whether OSM
has a policy of always following official usage or whether local usage
can take precedence.

Mark

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Re: Wickham Market, Suffolk

Tom Hughes-3
On 07/09/18 08:37, Mark Goodge wrote:

> It has a parish council that has not chosen to style itself as a town
> council. So, officially, it's a village.
>
> http://wickhammarket.onesuffolk.net/
>
> It's also a bit small for a town. According to Wikipedia (which also
> considers it a village) it has a population of just over 2,000. I
> wouldn't normally consider that a town.
>
> https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wickham_Market
>
> However, local usage may be different. The real question is whether OSM
> has a policy of always following official usage or whether local usage
> can take precedence.

As far as I know there is no official classification of places
as village or town - a town council is certainly a clue but lots
of places don't have a town (or parish) council at all so we
can't rely on that. A charter is another obvious hint.

I suspect this is a case that's kind of on the edge but I think
that village is what I would probably go with.

Tom

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Re: Wickham Market, Suffolk

Colin Smale
In reply to this post by Mark Goodge

On 2018-09-07 09:37, Mark Goodge wrote:

Obviously it's been "town" more than village (and the person who added it as such was/is pretty local) - but is that still correct?  I'll comment on the latest change about this thread so that everyone's aware of it.
It has a parish council that has not chosen to style itself as a town council. So, officially, it's a village.

 
How does that make it official? There are Town Councils whose name does not reference an existing place, so what the council calls itself doesn't make it official...
 
Once upon a time a Town was a place that had been granted the right to hold its own market, wasn't it? By that yardstick WM would appear to be a town.
 
Once again, there is no straight answer to the question "Is Whickam Market a town or a village?" The only single correct answer is "it depends" and there are a variety of correct answers according to the criterion you are using.
 
So now OSM (or the OSM community or the OSMUK local chapter) has to get off the fence and pick one. Or pick all of them by adding multiple tags, like market=yes, population=X etc. That provides the objective raw data so that data consumers (including renderers) can make their own decisions.
 
 
 

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Re: Wickham Market, Suffolk

Mark Goodge


On 07/09/2018 09:06, Colin Smale wrote:

> On 2018-09-07 09:37, Mark Goodge wrote:
>
>> Obviously it's been "town" more than village (and the person who
>> added it as such was/is pretty local) - but is that still correct?
>>  I'll comment on the latest change about this thread so that
>> everyone's aware of it.
>>
>> It has a parish council that has not chosen to style itself as a
>> town council. So, officially, it's a village.
>>
> How does that make it official? There are Town Councils whose name
> does not reference an existing place, so what the council calls
> itself doesn't make it official...

It does according to the Local Government Act 1972, which is what
defines a town for the purposes of local government.

> Once upon a time a Town was a place that had been granted the right
> to hold its own market, wasn't it? By that yardstick WM would appear
>  to be a town. Once again, there is no straight answer to the
> question "Is Whickam Market a town or a village?" The only single
> correct answer is "it depends" and there are a variety of correct
> answers according to the criterion you are using.

There are, indeed, multiple definitions of the difference between a town
and a village, although the idea that all towns have markets and
villages don't isn't really one of them (that's just something of a folk
story). Lots of villages have markets, lots of towns don't. There is
such a thing as a "charter market", which was, originally, only granted
to towns, but if we use that as the basis then we're getting a bit into
historic county territory (as well as having to redefine several quite
large towns as villages!).

> So now OSM (or the OSM community or the OSMUK local chapter) has to
> get off the fence and pick one. Or pick all of them by adding
> multiple tags, like market=yes, population=X etc. That provides the
> objective raw data so that data consumers (including renderers) can
> make their own decisions.

Multiple tags are certainly helpful, yes. But the particular tag under
discussion here is the 'place' tag.

I do think it's valuable to have a consistent approach to what goes in
the 'place' tag, which means having an agreed approach. Personally, I
think that the Local Government Act distinction between a village and a
town is the most useful, for a number of reasons. Firstly, it's clear
and unambiguous, it's objective rather than subjective. Secondly, it's
easy to find out, it doesn't rely on local knowledge. Also, it tends to
be the distinction that's most relevant to most people's everyday lives.

Other definitions are more problematic. There are two main historical
definitions, one based around town charters and the other around
ecclesiastical parishes, but you need to know the history of a
particular place to be able to apply them. And, in any case, they go
against the OSM principle that we map what is, not what was. Using them
would also create some rather ridiculous situations; Milton Keynes, for
example, is clearly a town by any sensible current definition but would
still be a village by historic definitions.

Equally, using a simple numeric formula ("it's a village if it has fewer
than X inhabitants") is harder than it looks. Quite apart from the
difficulty of determining the actual number of residents, it creates
edge cases where places that are legally and colloquially known as towns
would have to be mapped as villages, and vice versa. Residents of
Lancing, for example, are quite proud to live in the largest village in
England! Who are we to tell them that they don't?

Apart from using the legal definition, therefore, it seems to me that
the only other practical option is to leave it entirely subjective, and
go by what people perceive their town or village to be - to use
whichever of the historic, legal or numeric definitions is most
appropriate for them. But then you have the problem that not everybody
agrees (which I suspect is the issue with Wickham Market, which is why
it's alternated between village and town). And how can the OSM community
be sure that a particular designation really is what the majority of
local residents think, rather than just being the bee in some
individual's bonnet?

Obviously, all of the above is just my opinion, and others may well
disagree. But I'd go by the official designation in any places that I
mapped, unless there's an agreed OSM policy otherwise.

Mark

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Re: Wickham Market, Suffolk

Martin Wynne

> There are, indeed, multiple definitions of the difference between a town
> and a village

A useful indicator is the street lighting.

Generally a town has continuous evenly spaced street lamps along all or
most roads within its boundary.

Villages often have no street lighting, or only a few strategic lamps
scattered about.

The great advantage of this definition for mapping is that it is an
undisputed fact, on the ground.

Martin.

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Re: Wickham Market, Suffolk

Mark Goodge


On 07/09/2018 10:47, Martin Wynne wrote:

>
>> There are, indeed, multiple definitions of the difference between a town
>> and a village
>
> A useful indicator is the street lighting.
>
> Generally a town has continuous evenly spaced street lamps along all or
> most roads within its boundary.
>
> Villages often have no street lighting, or only a few strategic lamps
> scattered about.

That is really not true at all. It may be true for very small rural
villages, but not for the vast majority of them. If it were true, then
almost every village would need 30mph repeater signs throughout, as they
wouldn't have enough lighting to count as a built up area. In practice,
though, they don't.

Here's a couple of locations near me. One is in a village, the other is
in a town. Can you tell, just by looking at them, which is which?

https://goo.gl/maps/LcBE9EmjcTR2

https://goo.gl/maps/j8SWzBjjkeQ2

Mark

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Re: Wickham Market, Suffolk

Philip Barnes
In reply to this post by Martin Wynne
I think the presence of streetlights is a regional thing, certainly in Leicestershire only the smaller rural villages will lack street lights.

Phil (trigpoint)

On 7 September 2018 11:47:16 CEST, Martin Wynne <[hidden email]> wrote:

There are, indeed, multiple definitions of the difference between a town
and a village

A useful indicator is the street lighting.

Generally a town has continuous evenly spaced street lamps along all or
most roads within its boundary.

Villages often have no street lighting, or only a few strategic lamps
scattered about.

The great advantage of this definition for mapping is that it is an
undisputed fact, on the ground.

Martin.



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Re: Wickham Market, Suffolk

David Woolley
In reply to this post by Martin Wynne
On 07/09/18 10:47, Martin Wynne wrote:
>
> The great advantage of this definition for mapping is that it is an
> undisputed fact, on the ground.

You put lots of caveats into this, which leads lots of grounds for disputes.

One thing to remember is that OSM is international and the
town/village/city concepts don't map cleanly to other cultures.  Even US
English has a rather different concept of city.

What I've seen, in the context of other countries, is population being
favoured as the determiner.  Obviously you can get over-pedantic about
borderline cases.

The thing that makes the UK difficult is that the tag values look like
the common language terms and match well enough to be right, a lot of
the time.

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Re: Wickham Market, Suffolk

Martin Wynne
In reply to this post by Mark Goodge

> Here's a couple of locations near me. One is in a village, the other is
> in a town. Can you tell, just by looking at them, which is which?

If you already know one is a village and the other is a town, why do you
need any other means of identifying them?

However, this road in Badsey has no street lighting. If it was in a
town, it would have:

  https://goo.gl/maps/LdvB1zisEiP2

Martin.

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Re: Wickham Market, Suffolk

Mark Goodge
In reply to this post by David Woolley


On 07/09/2018 10:59, David Woolley wrote:

> On 07/09/18 10:47, Martin Wynne wrote:
>>
>> The great advantage of this definition for mapping is that it is an
>> undisputed fact, on the ground.
>
> You put lots of caveats into this, which leads lots of grounds for
> disputes.
>
> One thing to remember is that OSM is international and the
> town/village/city concepts don't map cleanly to other cultures.  Even US
> English has a rather different concept of city.

I think it has to be mapped according to local conventions. Using US
terminology for British placenames, and vice versa, would result in
labels that are counter to the expectation of most users. There isn't a
global, one size fits all solution.

> What I've seen, in the context of other countries, is population being
> favoured as the determiner.  Obviously you can get over-pedantic about
> borderline cases.

I think population is the most useful fallback in the absence of more
relevant local information. Fortunately, in England at least (Wales and
Scotland are different!), we do have an accessible and usable source of
legally definitive information for most cases.

> The thing that makes the UK difficult is that the tag values look like
> the common language terms and match well enough to be right, a lot of
> the time.

I don't see that as a problem. It makes it more likely that the right
tag value will be chosen by someone who is simply mapping from personal
knowledge rather than canonical sources. Which, most of the time, is
fine. We only need to revert to an agreed definition in cases where the
chosen value is incorrect.

Mark

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Re: Wickham Market, Suffolk

Mark Goodge
In reply to this post by Martin Wynne


On 07/09/2018 11:10, Martin Wynne wrote:
>
>> Here's a couple of locations near me. One is in a village, the other
>> is in a town. Can you tell, just by looking at them, which is which?
>
> If you already know one is a village and the other is a town, why do you
> need any other means of identifying them?

You were suggesting identifying them by observation, using street lights
as a distinguishing factor.

> However, this road in Badsey has no street lighting. If it was in a
> town, it would have:
>
>   https://goo.gl/maps/LdvB1zisEiP2

This road in Evesham has no street lights. That doesn't make it a village:

https://goo.gl/maps/dvyf4foNydN2

It is true that the larger the urban area, the more likely it is to be
consistently lit, and towns tend to be larger than villages. But that's
just a variant of using population size to differentiate between a
village and a town. It's only reliable at the ends of the spectrum,
where there is already little dispute. It doesn't help with the edge
cases or the atypical scenarios.

Mark


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Re: Wickham Market, Suffolk

Martin Wynne
In reply to this post by Mark Goodge
> If it were true, then almost every village would need 30mph repeater signs throughout, as they
> wouldn't have enough lighting to count as a built up area. In practice, though, they don't.

Yes they do. At least all the villages I know have 30mph repeaters.
Here's a couple at random:

  https://goo.gl/maps/zMfNHUFTSW92

  https://goo.gl/maps/N96GbyndYRB2

Martin.

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Re: Wickham Market, Suffolk

Mark Goodge


On 07/09/2018 11:25, Martin Wynne wrote:

>> If it were true, then almost every village would need 30mph repeater
>> signs throughout, as they wouldn't have enough lighting to count as a
>> built up area. In practice, though, they don't.
>
> Yes they do. At least all the villages I know have 30mph repeaters.
> Here's a couple at random:
>
>   https://goo.gl/maps/zMfNHUFTSW92
>
>   https://goo.gl/maps/N96GbyndYRB2

None of the villages round here do. Nor do any of those I've lived in
previously.

Mark

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Re: Wickham Market, Suffolk

Martin Wynne
In reply to this post by Mark Goodge
> You were suggesting identifying them by observation, using street lights
> as a distinguishing factor.

Yes, in the event that you are uncertain. I said it was a useful indicator.

If you already know, you don't need an indicator. No-one is going to be
in any doubt about whether Evesham is a town or a village.

Martin.

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Re: Wickham Market, Suffolk

Mark Goodge


On 07/09/2018 11:35, Martin Wynne wrote:
>> You were suggesting identifying them by observation, using street
>> lights as a distinguishing factor.
>
> Yes, in the event that you are uncertain. I said it was a useful indicator.

But it's not a useful indicator, because it's least reliable precisely
in the cases where you are most uncertain.

Mark

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Re: Wickham Market, Suffolk

lsces
In reply to this post by Mark Goodge


Sent from MailDroid

-----Original Message-----
From: Mark Goodge <[hidden email]>
To: [hidden email]
Sent: Fri, 07 Sep <a href="tel:201811">2018 11:32
Subject: Re: [Talk-GB] Wickham Market, Suffolk



On 07/09/2018 11:25, Martin Wynne wrote:
>> If it were true, then almost every village would need 30mph repeater
>> signs throughout, as they wouldn't have enough lighting to count as a
>> built up area. In practice, though, they don't.
>
> Yes they do. At least all the villages I know have 30mph repeaters.
> Here's a couple at random:
>
>   https://goo.gl/maps/zMfNHUFTSW92
>
>   https://goo.gl/maps/N96GbyndYRB2

None of the villages round here do. Nor do any of those I've lived in
previously.

(Quoting crap on mobile clients!)
Broadway is still a village in my book, and had to sort speed limit signs when speeding tickets were found invalid. In some ways the facebook singular 'city' designation makes some sence.

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Re: Wickham Market, Suffolk

Warin
In reply to this post by Mark Goodge
On 07/09/18 21:04, Mark Goodge wrote:

>
>
> On 07/09/2018 11:35, Martin Wynne wrote:
>>> You were suggesting identifying them by observation, using street
>>> lights as a distinguishing factor.
>>
>> Yes, in the event that you are uncertain. I said it was a useful
>> indicator.
>
> But it's not a useful indicator, because it's least reliable precisely
> in the cases where you are most uncertain.

You guys need to get back to the essential basic question.

How many pubs? :))


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Re: Wickham Market, Suffolk

Stuart Reynolds
In reply to this post by lsces
My two pennyworth, FWIW…

The problem here is that it is very subjective. If you have a lot of small villages around a much larger place, the temptation may be to call that your local town - and this may be a reason why Wickham Market is called a town. Here in Southend-on-sea, we have around 270,000 inhabitants. We are definitely a town, not a city (despite many smaller places being cities - itself another thorny definition which I do NOT propose to get into). Yet older folk (including me, not that I am hideously old) still talk about going up to town when we mean going to London. Has London ever been a town? Not in any real sense, but it would be daft to use that “local usage” as an excuse to call London a town rather than a city.

We also attract mappers from outside of the UK. There are very real and genuine reasons why we have certain features mapped in certain ways, but to rummage around in the depths of British history to determine the charter status of towns, or explain the vagaries of the British governmental / administrative boundaries (historic counties, anyone?) just confuses everyone and makes mapping significantly more complicated than it needs to be.

I would support a simple, objective definition, based on population size.

Stuart

PS - Milton Keynes is, at one level, a village. It is one of the original villages that got swept up into the “New Town”, and is now just one of the many parts of Milton-Keynes-the-town. You can see it at https://www.openstreetmap.org/node/462753393.


On 7 Sep 2018, at 12:12, [hidden email] wrote:



Sent from MailDroid

-----Original Message-----
From: Mark Goodge <[hidden email]>
To: [hidden email]
Sent: Fri, 07 Sep <a href="tel:201811" class="">2018 11:32
Subject: Re: [Talk-GB] Wickham Market, Suffolk



On 07/09/2018 11:25, Martin Wynne wrote:
>> If it were true, then almost every village would need 30mph repeater
>> signs throughout, as they wouldn't have enough lighting to count as a
>> built up area. In practice, though, they don't.
>
> Yes they do. At least all the villages I know have 30mph repeaters.
> Here's a couple at random:
>
>   https://goo.gl/maps/zMfNHUFTSW92
>
>   https://goo.gl/maps/N96GbyndYRB2

None of the villages round here do. Nor do any of those I've lived in
previously.

(Quoting crap on mobile clients!)
Broadway is still a village in my book, and had to sort speed limit signs when speeding tickets were found invalid. In some ways the facebook singular 'city' designation makes some sence.
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Re: Wickham Market, Suffolk

Colin Smale
In reply to this post by Mark Goodge

W.r.t. the use of street lighting as a differentiating factor between a Town and a Village: Do the Road Traffic Acts at any point refer to this distinction? I bet they don't.... It's all about "built-up area" and "restricted road" status.



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