Talk:List of Old Gowers

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To Do[edit]

1) Add wiki links where possible.
2) Prune descriptions that seem over-long.
3) Obtain and consult official list of Old Gowers - add any missing notable names
4) Go through current list - check up on any entries that seem like they might be hoaxes
5) Go through list - check up on any entries that do not seem that notable
6) Any names deleted as suspected hoaxes or deemed not truly notable - should be placed on the "Deleted Entries" list at the foot of this Discussion Page and marked accordingly

Possible people to add[edit]

Below is a list of OGs which the school histories state as eminent/notable, but who I can't find anything about....

  • R. Horton Smith
  • H.J. Manning
  • John Hamilton Betts (OG 1903?)
  • Louis Bielinky (OG 1931-40).
  • Professor Dennis Neville Baron (OG 1936-41).
  • George Arthue Beggs (Og 1893-1901).
  • Victor Bayley C.B.E. (OG 1891-98).
  • Hymen William Benjamin
  • Raymond William Birch C.B.E. (1913-19).
  • Professor Clive Hawood (spelling mistake?) (OG 1897-03).
  • Commander William Eric Banks C.B.E. (Commander of H.M.S. Firedrake, but thats all I can find).
  • Wing Commander Robert Lawrence Bowes.
  • Mr? Stovin-Bradford F.R.S.
  • Major David Charles Bowser - film maker? (OG 1913-16).
  • Oscar Frank Brown C.B.E. (1897-06)
  • Professor Benedict Delisle Burns (1922-31), author of "The Mammalian Cerebral Cortex".

above unsigned notes added by user Ramw2

The list is very impressive - so kudos to those who have assembled it. However because of its length it is hard to digest and navigate. It might be a good idea to organize the list in some way. Perhaps listed alphabetically? Or perhaps follow a layout shown on the discussion page of user Ramw2 - and break down the names into some broad categories. eg Military, Politics, Sports, Arts etc etc. Davidpatrick 06:48, 10 December 2006 (UTC)

Work required[edit]

This page definitely needs some work done. (See my earlier comment lower down page.) First and foremost the names should be in some type of sequence rather than in random order. (I just discovered and removed one duplication in the list. There may well be others.) Given that it would be difficult and somewhat arbitrary to place people in categories - I suggest that the most logical format would be alphabetical by surname. (Where someone has more than one name - eg a person who has been ennobled - the surname at birth should be the determinative.) Unless anyone disagrees - could we agree this as a project to be undertaken? Davidpatrick 14:28, 6 February 2007 (UTC)

The article is in serious need of work! Please assist this by doing at least SOME of the work of sequencing the names in alphabetical order. Which would help eliminate some of the duplication. And would eliminate the random order presently in place. Davidpatrick 20:42, 24 February 2007 (UTC)


The page now has 26 "letter" categories A-Z. I have already entered some names under the letter A - and alphabetized those names within that section.

Copy the ENTIRE list of Old Gowers

Paste the entire list into the NEXT empty section - eg "B"

Then go through the list that you have just pasted - and delete every individual whose surname starts with a letter OTHER than that letter. (eg if you are in the "B" section. Delete all names that don't start with the letter "B"

Then alphabetize the names WITHIN that letter section. (That should help us eliminate duplicate entries.)

When all 26 sections have been completed - we should double-check against the overall list to ensure that no names were accidentally deleted.

Once that double-check has been done. The overall list can be safely deleted.

Next work to improve the page[edit]

The next tasks for any visitors who care to help are these:

1) Double-check through the list at the bottom of the Alphabetical sequence of names - just to make sure that no names were accidentally left out when they were transferred into their respective letters of the alphabet.

2) Once that has been done - please indicate it on this Discussion Page - and we can then delete the random list at the foot of this page.

3) At that point the article will be in very good shape - and ready for some general work. Adding wiki links where we can. Pruning descriptions that seem over-long.

4) Other ideas for improving the article should be discussed on this Discussion Page.

Here are some thoughts:

A) It would be great if we there was some support from the OG organization. To look at the list. Suggest more names - help fill in missing gaps. We are not permitted to do "Original Research" - but one of the editors on this page should get hold of a book of OG members perhaps?

B) Are there any entries on the list that look doubtful? Anything that looks like a hoax? Or anyone who by description provided really doesn't seem to be that notable?

If anyone determines that a name should be removed - we could place the deleted name here on the talk page in a section set up for that. So that it is easily accessible to be seen. And can be restored easily if deemed valid.

Davidpatrick 07:38, 2 April 2007 (UTC)

Thanks due for work on this page[edit]

Thank you very much to the two editors "Sampm" and "Maelbrigda" for their hard work in placing the list of names in alphabetical sequence. Your work is much appreciated. Davidpatrick 07:38, 2 April 2007 (UTC)

Names finally sorted![edit]

All names doublechecked - phew!! I will list them here as a record then delete from main page

Maelbrigda 23:14, 3 April 2007 (UTC)

Major Task Book completed![edit]

Major job - well done! Thanks.

Next tasks to do are listed at top of page.

Davidpatrick 00:12, 4 April 2007 (UTC)

Deleted Entries[edit]

Space to place any entries deleted from article after 4th April 2007[edit]

Please indicate whether entry was deleted as "Suspected Hoax Entry" or "Doubtful Notability""

Benjamin Fowler - Doubtful Notability Mesdale (talk) 14:18, 15 August 2012 (UTC)

Organisation of people[edit]

Of what use is it to a reader to have the list in alphabetical order, rather than grouped by what they are notable for? Grumpyyoungman01 09:47, 19 April 2007 (UTC)

Grouping by notability would pose problems. Firstly the broad range of categories. Trying to define the catheories etc etc. Then you have the fact that many people are polymaths and would come under several categories. The alphabet is not a perfect solution. It is simply the optimum. Davidpatrick 12:18, 19 April 2007 (UTC)
I think it would be appropriate to list people under all significant categories of notability that they fall under, with a note at the end of each such entry: "Also listed in (other field)". Consideration could also be given for having a "polymaths" section. These changes would make the list more useful than a waste of space, as now you can only effectivly look for someone if you already know what their name is, which is pretty redundant as someones own wikipedia page should state their education. If not, then when using "what links here" on a biographical page, a result "like List of Old..." really stands out. Grumpyyoungman01 01:37, 20 April 2007 (UTC)

I have been working on this article for several months. When I first started it was just an amorphous mass of names - no chronology, no alphabet, no categories. And consequently many duplicate entries. Of zero use. As you will see above - in December I sought suggestions/help to reorganize. In the absence of any offers of help - I thought that an alphabetical sorting would at least be better than the random listing and duplications. So I set a layout for it and started the process. A couple of other people helped out. It has certainly been a vast improvement.

Sorting by category is an interesting way to go. It would require a lot of work. Other similar pages are done in different ways. I've seen lists of "old boys" by chronology of school years, by alphabet and by category. And others are just a disorganized mess as this article had been.

I don't agree that the alphabetical listing is without some use. It is a fascinating read in itself. And underscores the diversity of the fields that Old Gowers have gone into. And - for now at least - it helps keep out the duplicate entries.

If there is to be any change - then I think there are some important things to be done first - before switching to categories.

1) As you will see from the "To Do" list - I think there needs to be some work done on the actual names. Should we keep all the people who don't yet have Wikipedia articles themselves? How do we know that they are truly notable? Have we sources to verify the notability of those who have no article on Wikipedia? Are they listed by the UCS Old Gower association somewhere?

2) There are some entries that are much longer than others. Should there be a roughly standard length of entry? Or are some of the more rambling descriptions acceptable?

3) If there are to be categories - what should those categories be? That should be considered carefully. It would require going through the A-Z list and noting the various realms in which people have worked. Then proposing the list of categories - and having a couple of people work on that. It would require some back and forth teamwork to agree on categories

Are you prepared to do some of that work? Is anyone else up for doing all that work? Davidpatrick 11:02, 20 April 2007 (UTC)

Hi David. Certainly a lot of ground work to do, and I am prepared to help out. Just for interest/context here is another alumni page before I went to work on it and afterwards. The raw list of people was supplied by anonymous editors off of a school published alumni list which couldn't be accessed by the general public and was therefore un attributable. Even if such a list for a school is a good source though, it should not be the only source used on an entry, mainly to ensure that the person achieves a certain standard of notability. The entries from the list seemed like they were copied word for word and were full of hyperbole, inaccuracies and POV etc...
The policy I have taken with notabilty and existing articles is to assume that someone is notable (if notability is clearly stated) and that they attended the school, unless a source tells otherwise (or in the case of non-notability does not tell).
So if I were to start work on organising the list, I would do:
1. Without editing, browse through the list and come up with lists of proposed categories to post here on the talk page.
2. Reach not just consensus but unanimity on the categories, implement the category system slowly and delibrately to allow any subsequent, unforseen disagreements to be delt with.
3. Obtain a general dictionary of biography (such as the periodical who's who) for a round of (not particularly reliable) citations. Same with an official school publication, if one is available to the general public. After that reliable sources would include material cited on a entries own WP article, a biography, or a more specific and reliable dictionary of biography such as that for a certain profession. Grumpyyoungman01 23:34, 21 April 2007 (UTC)
I think it would be a good idea if you cited some school sources for this (excellent) list even if it is not accessible as otherwise the general reader wonders where the names have come from. Also I found Chevrillon on Fr Wiki. It's surprising that John Barrett (tennis) doesn't have an article as Google finds plenty on him and mentions UCS. -- roundhouse0 17:58, 10 September 2007 (UTC)
I agree with -- roundhouse0 on the citations. I've just done this job for List of notable Old Greshamians and it has had good knock-on effects. You may be able to pick up some ideas from there. Xn4 23:49, 10 September 2007 (UTC)
Yes, List of notable Old Greshamians is exemplary, if a little daunting. -- roundhouse0 01:12, 11 September 2007 (UTC)


In April 2007, focus was brought on this page to whether entries may not be appropriate. The list still contains many redlinked names that lack independent refs reflecting that the people are notable. The WP:LISTPEOPLE guideline does not permit adding such names in the first place, and the guideline will be enforced. If any editor wishes to create articles on such individuals or add appropriate refs, feel free to do so. Here is a link to the page as it stands today, replete with redlinks, so people can revisit the redlinks in the future and restore them if they supply the appropriate independent refs or write the appropriate articles. Best.--Epeefleche (talk) 02:04, 13 September 2011 (UTC)

The discussion in April 2007 (immediately above) was nothing to do with redlinks or refs, as this was not thought to be a problem for a list in 2007 (eg WP:LISTPEOPLE was quite different in 2007). Guidelines are guidelines and no-one has the authority to 'enforce' them. (This said I agree with Epeefleche that many of those in the list are difficult to justify. I would also agree that new additions should comply with present guidelines.) Occuli (talk) 10:33, 13 September 2011 (UTC)
In April 2007, the following was written, reflecting the same sensitivity editors should be aware of now, over four years later: "We are not permitted to do "Original Research" ... B) Are there any entries on the list that look doubtful? Anything that looks like a hoax? Or anyone who by description provided really doesn't seem to be that notable?"
And editors of this article who have it watchlisted have seen my edit summaries since May 4, over four months ago, that have pointed to the WP:LISTPEOPLE guideline, and the necessity for either a wp article on each entry or appropriate RS refs.
Our policy does not allow red-linked entries that lack appropriate refs to be added in the first place. That list is full of unverified "information", in direct disregard to WP:LISTPEOPLE.
Where the people listed are living people, the problem is even further compounded. See WP:BLPSOURCES and WP:BLPREMOVE.
It is not in the interest of the Project to have unverified information of this sort. I've left a link to the redlink-replete list as it stands now above, which editors can look at even after this article has its red-linked, zero-reference entries deleted.
As to the statement "Guidelines are guidelines and no-one has the authority to 'enforce' them", that is of course false. Editors should edit within the guidelines. Editing against the guidelines, without proper reason, is disruptive. Disruptive editing can lead to sanctions, and if editors refuse to edit within the guidelines they can become subject to such sanctions. If further discussion would be helpful on this point, we can bring it to AN/I or an appropriate talkpage, so that such problems can be avoided, but I would hope there would be no need for that.
Editors should feel free to either: a) write the requisite articles, or add the requisite refs; or b) move this discussion to the WP:LISTPEOPLE talkpage and BLPN noticeboard, if they believe we should let this redlink, zero-ref replete list stay in its current form for weeks more, as has been suggested. IMHO that would be contrary to policy, and good sense. Best.--Epeefleche (talk) 18:51, 13 September 2011 (UTC)