For the last 10 years the Village Magazine has paid for the Chawton.Info Village web-site which has been managed and run for the benefit of the Village.
The magazine contributes to good causes in both Chawton and Farringdon, including paying in full for the local web-sites, and tries to be even-handed. However the contribution to Chawton.Info is by far the largest annual grant; this can be justified on the grounds that advertisers get a benefit from appearing on the site and it provides value to the local community.
The aim of Chawton.info has always been to provide a free to use central information resource for the Village for residents and visitors alike by providing both present day and historical information. Only commercial entities pay via their advertising to the magazine.
The software behind the web site is now no longer maintained, therefore it needs upgrading to improve functionality and security; however the Magazine cannot afford to increase its contribution, although it is happy to continue the funding at the current level.
The new Chawton Parish Council (CPC) expressed a desire to develop their own site exclusively for CPC activities which will incur start up and on-going costs, and which the magazine could not support financially as advertisements would not be allowed.
It was suggested that the CPC may wish to pay the extra annual cost for the updated software components for Chawton.Info. It was proposed that CPC could put their own business information on a separate area within the Village web-site which would not carry ads. This was agreed to be one option providing a solution, by CPC.
It was made clear that magazine funds could not sponsor a stand-alone parish council web-site, with or without ads. We already spend a few hundred pounds each year for print and paper for CPC content in the magazine. The magazine would, however, be prepared to continue to pay at the current level for the upgraded Chawton.info site with ads and CPC matters separated without advertising, and that CPC could contribute the small extra amount needed to update the site We note that all CPC documents are all in the public domain and the CPC has no problems providing the same information in the magazine which carries the same adverts.
CPC has stated that it will no longer support the Chawton.info site and will instead launch and run their own web site solely devoted to CPC business and wholly at the ratepayers' expense.
Following discussions between the magazine management committee and the webmaster of this site, we can confirm that the Village website will continue to be directly supported by the Village magazine to the current level and that it's business as usual for Chawton.info.
To cover the additional costs and enable the upgrade to be undertaken, some alternative funding is required. The shortfall is £250. A new PayPal payment button now appears on the web site to allow contributions to be made by users of the site.
Most importantly, we are inviting you to provide feedback on the web site and its value to the Village, both to residents and visitors. We are interested to know what’s useful to you and what you would like to see added or changed. Please provide feedback via the following form, so that our scarce resources are directed to the best results for the village of, and visitors to, Chawton.
Village magazine management and Chawton.info webmaster
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