Talk:Site of Special Scientific Interest

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Untitled[edit]

Re adding the Woodland management link- sensitive woodland mangement can be relevant to SSSI's so hopefully as both articles develop the relevance of a link will become apparent...) Cheers quercus robur

List of SSSIs[edit]

The list of SSSIs on this page is never going to be complete, I suspect. I'm not sure it adds much to the page. Perhaps it should be made into a category (if there isn't already one) and removed from the actual SSSI page? A few examples of SSSIs with reasonable pages can serve instead. Any views on this suggestion? Naturenet 11:02, 1 Mar 2005 (UTC)

I agree - given that there are over 4000 SSSIs in England alone [1], attempting to list them is not only a futile task but could be quite misleading (someone visiting the page at the moment could be forgiven for thinking that they're mostly found in Derbyshire, Kent and Somerset). Most SSSIs would never qualify for an article on that basis alone, anyway. A category is the way forward I think. Blisco 14:41, 21 May 2006 (UTC)

How protected[edit]

The article fails to explain what ramifications the designation has. HOw are these areas protected? Owned by the state?, restricted from development?, restricted from entry? just a pretty name to hang on the door? Rmhermen 17:27, 21 July 2006 (UTC)

I've had a go at covering the legal aspects -- any comments? Richard New Forest 23:46, 14 December 2006 (UTC)

New template[edit]

I've set up a new template, {{SSSI}}. Using * {{SSSI|1003826}} generates:

Link to example

I'm happy if people want to copy this for other countries; or to add a country/ designating body field and the relevant URLs. Andy Mabbett 11:05, 25 April 2007 (UTC)

Areas of Search problem (England only)[edit]

Hi. We have a small problem with the English Areas of Search. The areas which we list don't quite match the actual Areas of Search as originally defined by the NCC. Most of the problem is because some of the larger counties were divided into two or more AOSs but there also some smaller deviations from the metropolitan counties-based system, usually where there is a National Park involved. The Welsh & Scottish ones are fine.

Here's the list of AOSs that are OK (I've linked to the SSSI list pages):

AvonBedfordshireBerkshireBuckinghamshireCambridgeshireCheshireCornwallDorsetEast SussexGloucestershireGreater LondonHertfordshireIsle of WightKentLancashireLeicestershireNorthamptonshireNottinghamshireOxfordshireShropshireSomersetSouth YorkshireSurreyWarwickshireWest MidlandsWest SussexWest Yorkshire

The problem cases are as follows:

a) Counties that are comprised of multiple Areas of Search

b) Other problems

  • Cleveland - doesn't exist as an AOS, Cleveland SSSIs are in either the E Durham AOS or the N York Moors AOS
  • Derbyshire & Staffordshire - the Peak District NP is an AOS in its won right
  • Greater Manchester and Merseyside - these two are combined as a single AOS
  • Tyne and Wear - doesn't exist as an AOS, Tyne & Wear SSSIs are in either the E Durham AOS or the E Northumberland AOS

What shall we do? SP-KP (talk) 13:38, 30 March 2008 (UTC)

It is already covered to some extent earlier in the article, under biological SSSIs. The AoSs as they were in the original selection guidelines (which being for the NCC applied to the whole of Britain) were Watsonian vice counties (well-established divisions used for biological recording, roughly based on the administrative counties). In theory Natural Areas ([2]) ought to have replaced the vice-counties as the Areas of Search in England. The vice-county system does lead to anomalies, where county boundaries cut through more natural features, requiring both AoSs to represent the feature in the SSSI series – for example there are two almost identical woods half a mile or so apart, one notified for Kent, one for Surrey (if you go to the Clacket Lane services on the M25, you're surrounded by the Surrey one). Nevertheless, most existing SSSIs were selected under the vice-county system, and the NE web page makes them sound current:

"Areas of Search (AOS) are a practical framework for the selection of sites within the national range of variation in habitats and species assemblages resulting from differences in environmental factors – climate, topography, geology, soils and land-use. Within each AOS, a minimum aim will be to represent all the differenthabitats and species that are present by at least one – and preferably the best – example or population. In practice, administrative areas i.e. counties or vice-counties, have been adopted as the AOS for SSSI selection"[3]

Geological SSSIs (and some biological ones such as rivers) have never been selected using AoSs, but nationally. Richard New Forest (talk) 20:46, 30 March 2008 (UTC)

Hi Richard.

Re: "The AoSs as they were in the original selection guidelines (which being for the NCC applied to the whole of Britain) were Watsonian vice counties" - I have the original guidelines in front of me now, and that's not the case, I'm afraid - although you are correct in saying that in some of the larger counties e.g. Norfolk, Devon, the VC boundary was used as the basis for the subdivision (hence, NE's statement is true, although it clearly has the potential to mislead).

What I was getting at here is - what should we do regarding the lists of SSSIs. Some accurately reflect an AOS, some combine more than one, and some (e.g. Cleveland) use a different area entirely. The standard introductory text, however, says (I paraphrase) "This is a list of SSSIs in the X Area of Search". Options include - a complete re-structuring of the pages as per the AOSs, leaving as is, with changes to the introductory text where it is inaccurate, or something in between. Any preference?

SP-KP (talk) 22:03, 30 March 2008 (UTC)

I've listed the English AOSs at Area of Search SP-KP (talk) 22:24, 30 March 2008 (UTC)

This certainly does make the listing of SSSIs more complicated than I first thought. At the moment I would prefer to keep the current lists that we have. The first reason for this is that the Natural England website lists SSSIs in the same counties that we have lists for (see here). Second the pdf files for each SSSIs that I have seen list the county the site is in and hardly ever mention the AOS. However some changes will be necessary. Introductions on each list will need to talk about which and how many AOS are incorporated in the list. For example the Cleveland list could have an extra column showing whether a site is in the E Durham or N York Moors AOS. Thoughts? Suicidalhamster (talk) 10:19, 1 April 2008 (UTC)
The citations only list the planning authorities, not the AoSs – so they will not, for example, list Hampshire County Council for a site in Southampton Unitary Authority, and the New Forest will list the New Forest National Park Authority as well as Hampshire CC and New Forest District Council (though bear in mind that the many citations are quite old, and may predate the current planning authority situation). The NE website (mostly) uses the counties (not AoSs) as they were before Unitary Authorities, and I think that is also the way to do it here. --Richard New Forest (talk) 10:37, 1 April 2008 (UTC)
Are there lists online showing which AOS a particular site is in? This would be useful for referencing the appropriate lists. There are many pdfs here do they have the relevent information? Suicidalhamster (talk) 12:45, 2 April 2008 (UTC)

Referencing problem[edit]

The English Nature citation sheets are now no longer viewable at the web location cited in our articles here. I'll try to find out whether they are still online - presumably they're at Natural England's website. We'll need to do an update across all SSSIs - not a small task - maybe it could be done semi-automatically? Does anyone have any experience of bulk updates? SP-KP (talk) 09:59, 11 April 2008 (UTC)

They appear to be back online - lets hope they stay like that! Suicidalhamster (talk) 18:49, 23 May 2008 (UTC)
They are? :) A long time in the waiting. Rudget (Help?) 19:21, 23 May 2008 (UTC)

Requested move[edit]

The following is a closed discussion of the proposal. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made in a new section on the talk page. No further edits should be made to this section.

The result of the proposal was to not move the article. While its clear the original legislation did not capitalize the term, its also clear the ongoing, and common usage adopted capitalization. In this case, verifiability trumps any claims of "truth". Rockpocket 18:21, 15 December 2008 (UTC)


It is a common mistake to refer to Sites of Special Scientific Interest (capitals), rather than the correct form of sites of special scientific interest. I imagine this is because when using the acronym SSSI, one uses capitals and therefore people think the phrase must be capitalised. This, however, is a statutory term (Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981), and the legislation clearly provides for sites of special scientific interest: http://www.statutelaw.gov.uk/legResults.aspx?LegType=All+Legislation&title=wildlife&searchEnacted=0&extentMatchOnly=0&confersPower=0&blanketAmendment=0&sortAlpha=0&TYPE=QS&PageNumber=1&NavFrom=0&activeTextDocId=809266 See sections 28, 28B, 28C, 28D, 28E, 28G, 28H, 28I, 28J, 28N28P, 28Q, 28R, 31, 32, 52. Mooretwin (talk) 00:20, 12 December 2008 (UTC)

Could someone move this page accordingly? Mooretwin (talk) 00:21, 12 December 2008 (UTC)
No, that does not constitute adequate discussion at all. It needs to have more discussion, and a request made at WP:RM which you should already know about, given your previous contributions on a number of articles.  DDStretch  (talk) 00:26, 12 December 2008 (UTC)
Why does it need more discussion? Who is disputing this? Mooretwin (talk) 00:30, 12 December 2008 (UTC)
A number of editors, if you look at the editing history, where your change has been reverted twice. Take it to WP:RM.  DDStretch  (talk) 00:38, 12 December 2008 (UTC)
  • Support: seems like a good move. Rockpocket 02:07, 12 December 2008 (UTC)
  • Oppose. The question is not the legislation, but what people actually write. All of the sources here capitalize, as they really ought to; so does the BBC. Septentrionalis PMAnderson 03:43, 12 December 2008 (UTC)
An oft-repeated mistake is no less of a mistake. The primary source is clear that capitals are unnecessary. Mooretwin (talk) 09:12, 12 December 2008 (UTC)
Those categories can all be fixed. This is an encyclopaedia. It should be correct. Mooretwin (talk) 09:12, 12 December 2008 (UTC)
  • Oppose - generally I find that it's useful from a clarity point of view to capitalise specific legal classifications like this. It both enhances the connection with the commonly-used acronym, and makes it clear that this is a term with a specific legal status rather than just a descriptive one. Certainly the capitalised version seems to be the more widely-used. ~ mazca t|c 08:54, 12 December 2008 (UTC)
By that logic, should "civil partner" be written as "Civil Partner" because it has a specific legal status? Mooretwin (talk) 09:22, 12 December 2008 (UTC)
It would perhaps be logical, were it regularly abbreviated as "CP". But that's really irrelevant here - my comments on logic and clarity are there to explain the likely reasoning behind the fact that it's regularly capitalised in most sources relating to SSSIs. It's the fact that common usage in reliable sources tends to capitalise it that makes that the correct Wikipedia article title - the same is not true for civil partners, making the comparison not very useful. ~ mazca t|c 11:16, 12 December 2008 (UTC)
My goodness, so you think that if something is abbreviated using initials, therefore the phrase itself has to be capitalised? Yes, I accept - indeed, I specifically stated it in this RM(!) - the reasoning behind people using capitals. But that is a mistake - you don't have to capitalise a phrase because it is commonly abbreviated. The capitalisation in other sources is not correct - WP, as an encyclopaedia should reflect the correct form as per the legislation. If other bodies choose to use capitals that is their business. Mooretwin (talk) 11:42, 12 December 2008 (UTC)
I have no idea how you arrived at that conclusion based on what I said, you seem to be completely putting words in my mouth. I've said all I feel I need to here, any further interpretation of what I said is your choice. Thanks. ~ mazca t|c 13:46, 12 December 2008 (UTC)
  • Oppose This title has special meaning in the UK where this applies. The term is capitalised by government agencies and in broadsheet newspapers.— Rod talk 08:57, 12 December 2008 (UTC)
  • Oppose English Nature (now Natural England), the body that oversees SSSIs in England, use the capitalised form in all of their publications. Example: SSSI citation for Cheddar Reservoir. For more examples look at any of the citation sheets produced by English Nature on List of SSSIs in Somerset or indeed any of the other SSSIs referenced on Wikipedia.--TimTay (talk) 09:02, 12 December 2008 (UTC)
Natural England's mistakes need not be repeated on Wikipedia. Mooretwin (talk) 09:12, 12 December 2008 (UTC)
Natural England is the official agency that oversees SSSIs in England. It is very arrogant of you to suggest that they have made a mistake on every single piece of documentation that they have produced w.r.t. SSSIs. --TimTay (talk) 09:30, 12 December 2008 (UTC)
That doesn't make it immune from sloppy writing. Look at the primary source - the statute which created the designation! Goodness me. Think about it. Mooretwin (talk) 09:46, 12 December 2008 (UTC)
  • Support - quite clearly, the correct form does not have capitals. Lazy writing by various individuals and organisations need not be replicated in an encyclopaedia. Mooretwin (talk) 09:22, 12 December 2008 (UTC)
Comment - as the nom your !vote of support is already assumed. Please strike this from the !vote sheet. ColdmachineTalk 09:55, 12 December 2008 (UTC)
  • Oppose The article relates to areas designated by official bodies in the UK, not "areas of scientific interest" in any wider general sense, and as others have stated the term is capitalised in official use as an indicator that a site has been so designated. Ghmyrtle (talk) 09:27, 12 December 2008 (UTC)
Yes, we know that, but the designation doesn't have capitals. Look at the primary source which created the designation!! THAT is the official use! Mooretwin (talk) 09:46, 12 December 2008 (UTC)
No, that is not the "official use", it is the statute. "Official use" is what is used in official circles now. Ghmyrtle (talk) 09:58, 12 December 2008 (UTC)
See my comment below: the sources quoted in support are not the primary source. Richard New Forest (talk) 10:04, 12 December 2008 (UTC)
  • Oppose: as above (no need to repeat arguments/points already made in my view). ColdmachineTalk 09:54, 12 December 2008 (UTC)
  • Oppose. The proposal arises out of a fallacy: it is not true that it "is a common mistake"; the normal use is correct. The term "Site of Special Scientific Interest" does not derive directly from the legislation. In fact, the phrasing in the defining parts of the relevant Acts (NPAC 1949, WCA 1981) has always been "area of land ... of special interest by reason of...", and the marginal notes said "Areas of special interest" – for many decades the SSSI phrase itself did not occur anywhere in the legislation, despite being in wide formal use. SSSI (originally often "Site of Special Scientific Importance") is a convenient term used to summarise the designation, not one defined by the legislation. In general usage it has always been used with capital initials, and (as correctly observed above) it is usage which governs us here. The phrase has since been used in legislation, but the principal defining legislation is still Section 28 of the WCA 1981, which has not changed its wording in this respect. (Note that the CROW Act 2000 amended the WCA, it did not replace it. It did however – for England and Wales but not Scotland – change the marginal note in S28 to "Sites of special scientific interest". It also inserted sections – S28B, S28C etc – which use the phrase, but these are not the defining legislation). For what it's worth, I worked for many years for NCC and EN on SSSI notification, and I still sometimes lecture on this subject. Richard New Forest (talk) 10:01, 12 December 2008 (UTC)
That's a very roundabout way to argue for capitals! The legislation establishes and then regulates the designation, and no legislation ever uses capitals ... yet you say it should use capitals just because the exact phrase isn't used in section 28 (even though the marginal note to section 28 doesn't use capitals!) Tell me - why does none of the legislation use capitals, if the phrase should be capitalised?! Why does the marginal note not use capitals, if the term is meant to be capitalised? Mooretwin (talk) 10:09, 12 December 2008 (UTC)
And - by your own stated logic - do you accept that "area of outstanding natural beauty" should not be capitalised, since the "principal defining legislation" in that case quite clearly uses lower case letters? Mooretwin (talk) 10:16, 12 December 2008 (UTC)
Here's a recent example, which uses SSSI, but spells it out without capitals: [The Register of Sites of Special Scientific Interest (Scotland) Regulations 2008] - article 3(2) The SSSI register is to contain the following information and map in relation to each site of special scientific interest ... Mooretwin (talk) 10:10, 12 December 2008 (UTC)
Please read my comments above. The phrase does not come directly from the legislation, it is an independent phrase far older than its use in any legislation. It makes no difference what the usage in later legislation is: usage in legislation is quite different from that in general writing. Richard New Forest (talk) 10:17, 12 December 2008 (UTC)
Where does the phrase come from, then? Mooretwin (talk) 11:42, 12 December 2008 (UTC)
It was just made up to be convenient: it was too much trouble to say or even abbreviate "Area of Land of Special Interest by Reason of Its Flora, Fauna, or Geological or Physiographical Features". The original widely-used "Importance" was later changed to "Interest" to match the phrasing in the Act better. However, in notification documents the Act's phrasing is used: something like "It is the opinion of Natural England that the land outlined on the map is of special interest by reason of ..." etc. Site of Special Scientific Interest is a formal name given to the designation for convenience. Richard New Forest (talk) 13:56, 12 December 2008 (UTC)
And that formal name does not need capitals, and is not capitalised in the legislation which governs it. Mooretwin (talk) 16:23, 12 December 2008 (UTC)
The legislation does not "govern" the capitalisation. Anyway, no-one is saying it specifically needs capitals, though in my view if I had the choice I'd probably use them; you would prefer not. Neither of us can choose: the usage has "chosen", and we are both stuck with it. In the case of ancient woodland, I backed down on the same discussion, because usage there is generally (and mysteriously) not capitalised. It's about time you did the equivalent.—Preceding unsigned comment added by [[User:Richard New Forest|Richard New Forest]] ([[User talk:Richard New Forest|talk]] • [[Special:Contributions/Richard New Forest|contribs]])
  • Oppose As per Wikipedia:Naming conventions (common names), Use the most common name of a person or thing that does not conflict with the names of other people or things. Most sources I have found use the capitalised version, therefore I cannot support the move. ColourSarge (talk) 10:57, 12 December 2008 (UTC)

Comment - [MOSCAPS] might be helpful: Titles such as president, king, or emperor start with a capital letter when used as a title (followed by a name): "President Nixon", not "president Nixon". When used generically, they should be in lower case: "De Gaulle was the French president." ... Similarly, "Louis XVI was the French king" but "Louis XVI was King of France", King of France being a title in that context. Therefore, "Littleworth Common Site of Special Scientific Interest is in England", but "Littleworth Common is designated as a site of special scientific interest". Mooretwin (talk) 12:19, 12 December 2008 (UTC)

This is a spurious argument. "SSSI" is not a title, it's a designation, and it makes no difference whether it's the name of a single one or the term for the designation generally: both are almost always capitalised. Richard New Forest (talk) 13:56, 12 December 2008 (UTC)
It's not spurious. The same principle applies, whether it's a title or a designation. Mooretwin (talk) 16:23, 12 December 2008 (UTC)
You claim that this situation is equivalent to President, King etc. Caps are indeed used for Site of Special Scientific Interest when it is "Somewhere Meadows Site of Special Scientific Interest", but (as you now very well know) they are also used for the name of the designation generally – unlike President etc. The two situations are not equivalent, and so yes, it is a spurious argument. Richard New Forest (talk) 17:57, 12 December 2008 (UTC)

Comment - [MOSCAPS again]: When showing the source of an acronym, initialism, or syllabic abbreviation, emphasizing the letters that make up the acronym is undesirable: Incorrect: FOREX (FOReign EXchange), Incorrect: FOREX (foreign exchange), Correct: FOREX (foreign exchange) Therefore, Incorrect: SSSI (Site of Special Scientific Interest), Correct: SSSI (site of special scientific interest). Mooretwin (talk) 12:19, 12 December 2008 (UTC)

Again, spurious. It's not capitalised because it's an initialism with the initial letters emphasised, it's capitalised just because it is capitalised. You won't change it by finding other examples which are not comparable. Richard New Forest (talk) 13:56, 12 December 2008 (UTC)
But it shouldn't be capitalised. It is grammatically wrong so to do, and I believe the error has begun by people thinking it ought to be capitalised because the abbreviation is in capitals (someone on here even said as much). An oft-repeated grammatical mistake is no less a mistake. Mooretwin (talk) 16:23, 12 December 2008 (UTC)
Grammatically wrong...?! Where does that come from? Cap initials are common in English for such terms, and there is no "grammatical" rule against them. Richard New Forest (talk) 18:04, 12 December 2008 (UTC)
  • Oppose These are not mistakes and it is spurious to claim they are. BigDuncTalk 14:33, 12 December 2008 (UTC)

Comment Do we have a hint of where this problem originates? Mooretwin said above that "no legislation ever uses capitals". I wasn't aware of this, but as far as I can find out it does seem to be the case: for example, this source says "British laws don’t use initial capitals for defined terms". If it is true (for whatever reason), it would explain why SSSI, AONB and the rest do seem to be written with lower case initials in legislation. However, if legal writing uses a particular style, it does not make that style "correct" and all contrary usage "incorrect" – for example, legal writing generally avoids commas, but those are by no means incorrect in other writing. Mooretwin, I think you have misunderstood the significance of the lack of caps in the legislation: all you are doing is trying to impose a particular legal idiosyncracy onto general writing, where it does not belong. Actual usage in general writing is the guide for use here, and that usage is very clearly almost always with cap initials. (That would apply even if the phrase originated in the legislation, which as I've pointed out above, it does not.) It's surely clear enough by now that the whole proposal is an unfruitful one, for SSSIs as for the other examples mentioned. I suggest you retire gracefully at this point. Richard New Forest (talk) 14:35, 12 December 2008 (UTC)

  • Oppose Every agency responsible for Sites of Special Scientific Interest uses the initial letter in upper case. So should we here. Daicaregos (talk) 14:38, 12 December 2008 (UTC)

Note to closing editor: There appears to be a violation of WP:CANVASS on Wikipedia talk:Manual of Style#Capitals, since the section was started by Mooretwin after the various RMs were proposed by him, and the message is phrased using non-neutral wording and phrasing. I ask Mooretwin to either remove the message or edit it to make it neutral (such as the various messages are that I posted to a variety of projects which the articles would be relevant to by virtue of dealing with UK geographical topics, and/or which have project templates on the corresponding talk pages.)  DDStretch  (talk) 15:54, 12 December 2008 (UTC)

  • Oppose - The use of caps reflects the fact that this is an official designation, not just any old place which Joe Blogs considers to be a site of special scientific interest. In the first 4 pages of Ghits, three articles use lower case... and one of those uses both versions! PamD (talk) 16:21, 12 December 2008 (UTC)
  • Oppose - the correct naming convention (visible here) is widely used in British media and other mediums of public display. Caulde 18:50, 12 December 2008 (UTC)
  • Oppose - both capitalised and non-capitalised versions can be and are used. The legislation is not definitive in such matters. If anything, the capitalised version is more common but even if it were not there is no justification for a move. Therefore I support retaining the status quo not because one version is 'more correct' but because both have some currency and no move is necessary. Naturenet | Talk 00:39, 13 December 2008 (UTC)
  • Oppose It is a proper noun referring to a specific legal status. It is not descriptive. Proper nouns are capitalized in English. --Bejnar (talk) 06:16, 15 December 2008 (UTC)


So it's more than 72 hours since the move was requested (just before 01:00GMT on 12/12) and we have had a lot of comment. The guidance is to wait a "few days" for consensus. Do we now have consensus that the move should not be allowed? --TimTay (talk) 08:52, 15 December 2008 (UTC)

The above discussion is preserved as an archive of the proposal. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made in a new section on this talk page. No further edits should be made to this section.

Welsh SSSI lists[edit]

User:MarcusBritish and I have been having a productive discussion about the Welsh SSSI lists at his talk page, but there's one point where we have different opinions and I felt it would be useful to get some other editors' views. See User talk:MarcusBritish#Welsh SSSIs intro for the original discussion.

The discussion revolves around how the information on Welsh SSSIs should be grouped into pages. I'm fine with Marcus's proposal that we use modern local government areas rather than Areas of Search, but what we haven't resolved is what should happen to the current Area of Search based pages. Actually, we agree on some of them: where an AOS covers an aras which is now represented by multiple local government areas, we agree that there should be some explantory text and then links to lists for all of these smaller areas. However, we part company where multiple AOSs are now subsumed into larger local government areas. Take a look at List of SSSIs in Brecknock: this consists of the introductory text and then a link to List of SSSIs in Powys. My problem with this is that it's a "List of X" page which doesn't actually contain a list of X, but just acts as a redirect to another page which is a "List of X and Y and Z", and I can't think of another example of this anywhere else on Wikipedia. I'd propose instead just redirecting the page.

Do any other editors have a view on this? SP-KP (talk) 17:23, 31 August 2012 (UTC)

I do not see the logic of treating the two cases differently. There will always be a few users who are interested in reading details of AOSs and the reorganisation, but most will want to go straight to the list of SSSIs they are interested in. The problem I have with the Brecknock page is that it forces the reader to go through the explanation to find where to get the information they want. I suggest that in all cases there should be a lede paragraph of the form: "Brecknock is now part of Powys, so for SSSIs in Brecknock see List of SSSIs in Powys." Readers can then skip the details if they are not interested. Dudley Miles (talk) 18:27, 31 August 2012 (UTC)
In terms of the explanation now on each of the AOS pages, I produced that alongside SP-KP in order to find the right wording, but also to keep it concise. The prose is only 241 words, so I would have to dispute that readers are being "forced" to go through anything for more than a minute or two, with the links at the bottom being easier to find than in-line links. However, we could also use a hatnote, instead of or in addition to the external links section, such as:
But the {{for}} does only hold 4 links, so a custom {{hatnote}} maybe required for longer splits:
That does look cluttered and messy though. Maybe this would work:
That would then be the very first thing readers see, so they wouldn't be "forced" to read anything, and they could either go straight to the county that interests them, or spend that minute or two learning something extra.
Ma®©usBritish{chat} 03:26, 1 September 2012 (UTC)
My first reaction was that if the list is at 'Powys', the old 'List of' should redirect to it, but with List of SSSIs in Mid & South Glamorgan for example, being required to work more like a disambiguation page, I can see that doing the same, even when there is only one site to direct to, would be more consistent. It would, in effect be a 'list of one Principle Area'. RobinLeicester (talk) 20:31, 31 August 2012 (UTC
MarcusBritish's suggestion seems fine to me. Dudley Miles (talk) 11:43, 1 September 2012 (UTC)
All Welsh AOS pages now hatted as indicated above, and tagged (with WikiProject Protected Areas banner). Ma®©usBritish{chat} 22:00, 21 September 2012 (UTC)

AOSs still valid?[edit]

I am in doubt wether Natural England still uses the AOSs, as in the database here you can't select for ex. "Avon" but only "Somerset" which also includes some of the Avon entries like for example Ashton Court. For me that seems that Natural Enland is using a new system. Also, many of the links provided in the article are dead. --Matthiasb (talk) 00:14, 17 March 2017 (UTC)

NE is not using a new system. So far as I know AOS has always meant county as here. Avon is a former county which was abolished in 1996, and when most of the lists were created in around 2006, NE had not got around to updating for the change in boundaries. They finally got around to moving sites to the current counties and deleting the defunct counties a few years ago, but no one has updated the Wikipedia lists. There is a great need for someone to move the sites from Avon and Humberside (the other defunct county) to their current counties, but it would be a big job. It is also true that many of the links in the SSSI article are now dead links - as in so many articles.Dudley Miles (talk) 00:58, 17 March 2017 (UTC)
Sadly, there weren't that many links in the article to start with. But I've now updated all the dead ones and deleted two to a personal website which only provided a lookup tool which no longer exists. I've worked with SSSIs over many years since 1990, and have to admit to never encountering AOS.The search database uses counties, whilst NE also use Landscape Character Units (formerly Natural Areas). I think the govt's forthcoming 25 Year Environment Plan is using even larger priority areas to take action in. So I suspect it's the tense of this section that needs changing so that it refers to the c1989 selection process, and doesn't imply it's relevant to today's situation.Nick Moyes (talk) 01:26, 17 March 2017 (UTC)
Follow up: I've now changed the tense and added references to support the AOS concept. I've also lowered this section's hierarchical significance by one level, which seems appropriate. Nick Moyes (talk) 01:55, 17 March 2017 (UTC)