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Railways - Sleaford avoiding line and the GNGE modernisation
The transport section is light on these at present. Particularly as there has recently been (a major stage completes on the 9th) substantial modernisation work. The Sleaford avoiding line re-opened in September 2014. Sleaford railway station's description of the signalboxes' survival is outdated now too. Andy Dingley (talk) 10:17, 5 March 2015 (UTC)
Hi Andy, I think this kind of information is better placed in the GNGE article and the Sleaford railway station article. I agree that there are issues with the station's article, and I intend to work on it in the future. I am not an expert though - if you do have any information that can be included (and reliably sourced), it would be best to add it. Thanks, —Noswall59 (talk) 11:22, 5 March 2015 (UTC).
It certainly belongs in the more specific railway articles.
However I think the idea of a town that is both squarely on the route of a major main line, yet so unimportant to it that they built an "avoiding line" for it (railways don't tend to build many bypasses!) has significance for the town and that article.
Also the scale of the recent GNGE investment should have some positive influence on the town. I'm assuming (I live somewhere similar in South Wales) that there's a lot of commuter traffic from this as a dormitory area.
I'll start reading over the next few days and then begin to make comments. I am normally a slow reviewer - if that is likely to be a problem, please let me know as soon as possible. I tend to directly do copy-editing and minor improvements as I'm reading the article rather than list them here; if there is a lot of copy-editing to be done I may suggest getting a copy-editor (on the basis that a fresh set of eyes is helpful). Anything more significant than minor improvements I will raise here. I see the reviewer's role as collaborative and collegiate, so I welcome discussion regarding interpretation of the criteria. SilkTork✔Tea time
@SilkTork: thanks for taking this on - I look forward to your feedback and have replied to your query below. Cheers, —Noswall59 (talk) 13:40, 5 June 2015 (UTC).
@SilkTork: thanks again for your review - I very much appreciate this. I've addressed your queries below and made changes to the sports section. The others I feel are okay. Hopefully, this won't hold up the review. Cheers, —Noswall59 (talk) 15:15, 11 June 2015 (UTC).
Prose is clear and readable. There is a tendency in places to being over-detailed, and sometimes the reader is provided with a sequence of minor statistics and dates which is intended to be helpful, but can result in data overload where the reader ceases to register the information. It's not a problem significant enough to impact on the GA prose criteria, however, I will pick up on this again when dealing with the focus criteria, and will note it here as part of something to consider for ongoing development of the article. SilkTork✔Tea time 23:40, 4 June 2015 (UTC)
Images are relevant and have appropriate captions. SilkTork✔Tea time 08:43, 11 June 2015 (UTC)
No evidence of bias. Article is neutral and factual. SilkTork✔Tea time 08:45, 11 June 2015 (UTC)
Article is usefully, at times richly, supported by citation to reliable sources. Sources checked confirm what is in the article. SilkTork✔Tea time 10:11, 11 June 2015 (UTC)
Sources and background reading support what is in the article, there is no evidence for original research. SilkTork✔Tea time 10:11, 11 June 2015 (UTC)
Broad coverage. Article is detailed and informative enough to provide all the information a casual reader would wish to know about the town. SilkTork✔Tea time 10:13, 11 June 2015 (UTC)
*Images. Toward the end of the article the images increase, and the layout changes from being all on the right to alternating left and right, and it starts to look muddled. Captions are too long, and images are breaking into following sections, which are GA criteria: suitable captions, and layout. This is not a major issue, and all being well elsewhere I wouldn't hold up a listing just for these points. But if other issues emerge, then small items like these might start totting up. In addition, the quality of the some of the images is poor. There is limited encyclopedic value in Quarrington Hill. The image of Sleaford Navigation is dark. The lead image of St. Denys church has a lot of distracting and wasted foreground, yet the image is too small to be cropped. Etc. The images are not so poor that they impact on the GA criteria (though the issue of relevance could be evoked for Quarrington Hill), just noting the quality issue here for ongoing development. Sometimes better quality images can't be found. There is this image of the church, though even that is not ideal, and it's a toss-up if the greater depth of clarity of that image compensates for the lack of context of the rest of the structure offered by the existing lead image. SilkTork✔Tea time 23:14, 4 June 2015 (UTC)
Yes, some of the images are not brilliant, but it's difficult to find better ones. The one of the church in the infobox seems like a much better quality image, except for the cars, and I am reluctant to swap it, but if you think it's necessary, I will do. The Quarrington Hill one has gone. The layout of the images is fine on my monitor, but I guess that will be different for many people. Which are being problematic? I am happy to move them around.
As an example, the Landmarks section has two images for what is a small section, and each image has a long caption containing information which could be carried by the section text. The advice is that captions should be mainly for identifying and explaining the image, not for conveying unique encyclopedic information about the article topic - some readers may not read the caption. The lower image displaces the first line of the following section in my Firefox browser. As a suggestion, if some of the text from the captions is transferred into the section body then the section body increases in size, while the image frame decreases in size, making the whole section look more balanced, neater, and professional, plus it all then complies with the relevant guidelines. If you haven't done so for a while, it's worth re-reading the relevant guidelines as the advice can be useful: Wikipedia:Manual of Style/Captions and Wikipedia:Manual of Style/Layout (Wikipedia:Manual_of_Style/Layout#Images). SilkTork✔Tea time 21:56, 5 June 2015 (UTC)
@SilkTork: Okay, thank you. I hadn't looked over those pages for some time. I've now trimmed back the landscape and education captions, which I believe is where the problems were. I have also aligned all the images to the right. Hopefully this helps. Thank you, —Noswall59 (talk) 13:37, 6 June 2015 (UTC).
Focus. I'm just parking this query here for a while. I don't think it's a significant enough concern to hold up a listing, especially given the overall quality and usefulness of the article, however I feel it's worth talking about. My concern is that there is a lot of detail in the article that seems either trivial and/or might be better placed elsewhere. For example: "Sleaford Town F.C. played in the United Counties League Premier Division for the 2014–15 season. Formed in 1920 by enthusiasts from the Sleaford YMCA branch, it entered the Ruskington League as Sleaford Red Triangle F.C. in 1923. In 1927 it became the Sleaford Amateurs F.C. and moved to Boston Road Recreation Ground in 1966. Renamed Sleaford Town F.C. in 1968, the club moved to its present grounds at Eslaforde Park in 2007." This is more detail about the football club than is present in the lead of the main article on the topic: Sleaford Town F.C..
I have tried to trim this back now: it now only mentions the league they play in, their date of foundation and their grounds.
This population sub-section from Religion: "Most people in the town identify as Christian, although the proportion has declined between the last two censuses. At the 2011 Census, 70.3% of residents identified as Christian, while 21.8% reported no religion, and 6.6% did not state a religion; no other religious group comprised 1% or more of the population. The 2001 Census recorded that 81.6% of Sleaford residents identified as Christian, nearly ten percentage points higher than the national figure (71.8%); 11.5% of the town's residents had no religion and 6% did not disclose a religion. In the Compton Census (1676), New Sleaford had a Conformist population of 576 people, no "Papists", and 6 Non-conformists. In the 19th century, it had a sizeable Non-conformist population and a large Anglican congregation; at the 1851 Census of Religious Worship, an estimated 2,000 people attended Non-conformist places of worship, while an estimated 600–700 people attended Anglican services in the parish. The Wesleyans met in Westgate in the early 19th century; by 1848, the congregation had set up in Northgate, an area known for its taverns and poor tenements." That's a collection of facts, but it hasn't been summarised for the reader. So there's a lot of detail, but little comes ouit of it. I think what it is saying, essentially, is that Sleaford's current population mostly identifies as Christian, though in the past has been predominantly Nonconformist. I think that essential fact gets lost in the statistical detail.
The purpose of this section is to outline the religious demographic of Sleaford now and in the past. The first paragraph tries to achieve the former, while the latter deals with past records. I feel that the first paragraph is quite clear: it provides a one-line summary, followed by the data (which has been simplified from the long-list of denominations offered in the census). Hence, the casual reader can get an overview an the student, etc., can see the stats. I've yet to find a summary of this data, and so I have limited scope about what I can draw from the them without leaning towards OR. The second paragraph is also based on raw facts, but is designed to offer some overview of the town's religious demographic up to the 19th century; there has been no summary drawn from this data in the literature I've encountered, so it really is up to the reader to judge. In general though, I think it is quite clear that there was a large non-conformist majority versus a significant Anglican minority. Note that the modern censuses don't distinguish between Christian denominations, so I cannot say that "in the past, there was a large non-conformist population, whereas there is now a large Christian population"; there may still be a large non-conformist population amongst the Christians.
The Public services section gives information which is not unique to Sleaford. "British Gas [...] was privatised in 1986. Distribution of gas and electricity is the responsibility of the National Grid. The energy markets are regulated by the Office of Gas and Electricity Markets (OFGEM)." "Anglian Water, a former nationalised industry and natural monopoly, privatised in 1989 and regulated by the Water Services Regulation Authority (OFWAT)." And when it is unique, is perhaps giving more information than is needed especially when compared to the general history of the town. "In 1879, an Act of Parliament was passed to set up a water company for the town; pumping machinery was installed and works constructed in 1880 to provide a clean water supply to the town. In 1948, the council took over the company and in 1962 its operation was handed to the Kesteven Water Board, which was absorbed by the Anglian Water Authority in 1973." Could this not be summarised as "A modern water services system was established in 1880 which is today run by the Anglian Water Authority."? SilkTork✔Tea time 10:44, 11 June 2015 (UTC)
The short summaries about the national grid and OFWAT are designed to give a summary for non-English readers, or those unfamiliar with energy. If someone asked "where does Sleaford get its power?", that is the answer to their question. As for your comment on too much detail, I see your point, but I feel that your suggestion may skim over the facts a little too much. The arrival of pumped water was a major event for the town, and one much delayed by the land-owner's reluctance to sell land for the pumps to be built on. The brief mention of the nationalisation of the board and its stages in that process help to explain the current arrangement, but also allow anyone to see who has controlled their water supply. I think that's important information, which really ought to be much more easily accessible than it currently is.
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