All posts by Richard Nevell

Archaeologist who thinks Wikimedia is an important part of public outreach.

We’re back! Wiki Loves Monuments in 2020

September has started which can only mean on thing: it is time for Wiki Loves Monuments 2020.

We want you to share your photos of historic sites.

The competition opens on 1 September (today) and closes at 23:59 on 30 September. To take part and be in a chance with winning you need to upload photos of historic sites to Wikimedia Commons. The photos can then be used to illustrate Wikipedia articles about these sites, reaching millions of people every year.

There have been some fantastic images in the past and we are really looking forward to this year’s competition. So please share  your photos!

How can I take part?

Interactive map
Interactive map

We have a guide which walks you through each step of the process. In short, you need to have a Wikimedia account and then to upload your photographs of eligible historic sites and share them under an open licence. They can have been taken at any point – whether you go out and take new photos or sift through old albums to find something, they are all useful.

Are there prizes?

The best photograph overall will win £250, with £100 and £50 for second and third respectively. There are up to seven Highly Commended prizes, and prizes for the best images from each of England, Northern Ireland, Scotland, and Wales. The top ten from the UK also go into the judging for the international competition, so get a chance at more prizes.

We also have a special prize for the best photograph of a site in Scotland, courtesy of Archaeology Scotland who are sponsoring it. The winner will receive a free 1-year membership of Archaeology Scotland including the Archaeology Scotland Magazine and access to their learning resources.

Is 2020 different?

In some ways, but if you have taken part in previous years it will feel very familiar. The upload tool is the same, you can use the same log in details, and the competition is still about historic sites.

The main difference is that in the past we’ve had special prizes for best photographs of interiors and shots of buildings in use. We’ve retired these prizes this year since lockdown restrictions make accessing building interiors more challenging and limit the use of some historic sites. You can still submit photographs of interiors, either old or new images. If you’re going to take new images, make sure you and the people around you are safe.

Tips!

We have a tips page to get you started and help you make the most out of your photographs.

You have until the end of 30 September to take part, so take some time to plan your photos, go through old albums, and share your favourites.

Lead image: ‘Wikipedia Takes Coventry – Participants 3‘ by Rock drum, licensed CC BY SA 3.0.

Exploring WLM: mills

When someone mentions mills you might think of picturesque windmills or massive textile mills of the Industrial Revolution. Both are often protected historic sites in the UK, and Wiki Loves Monuments has plenty of impressive photos.

Herringfleet Windmill” by Fuzzypiggy is licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0.

Herringfleet was built in the early 19th century and today is a Grade II* listed building.

C Station Pump House” by Msemmett is licensed CC BY-SA 3.0.
Derwent Valley Mills East Mill Belper” by Danielloh79 is licensed CC BY-SA 3.0.
Elstead Mill” by Ainslie is licensed CC BY-SA 3.0.
“Hartford Mill Oldham” by RevDave is licensed CC BY-SA 3.0.

North West England is particularly well known for its role in the Industrial Revolution.

Jesmond Dene Mill” by PaulTurner is licensed CC BY-SA 4.0.
Bridge over Hebden Water at Gibson Mill” by RevDave is licensed CC BY-SA 4.0.
Thames Tunnel Mills” by King of Hearts is licensed CC BY-SA 4.0.
Tone Mills Dyehouse” by Msemmett is licensed CC BY-SA 4.0.

Tone Mill in Somerset was part of the largest woollen mill in South West England.

Abbey Mill from north” by Rodw is licensed CC BY-SA 3.0.
Saxtead Mill” by Kevinwailes is licensed CC BY-SA 3.0.
Water Mill, Ludlow, Shropshire” by Vincemc is licensed CC BY-SA 3.0.
Mapledurham Watermill” by Msemmett is licensed CC BY-SA 4.0.
Broadstone Mill, Reddish” by Stevekraken is licensed CC BY-SA 4.0.

Find out what historic sites are just round the corner and take part in the world’s largest photo competition!

Exploring WLM: prehistory

With 1.3 million visitors in 2014, Stonehenge is just about the most famous prehistoric site in the UK. There are some striking monuments which have withstood the elements for thousands of years, and some examples from the previous editions of Wiki Loves Monuments are below.

"Wayland Smithy Long barrow" by Msemmettis licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0.
Wayland Smithy Long barrow” by Msemmett is licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0.
"Badbury Rings" by Dormouse14is licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0.
Badbury Rings” by Dormouse14 is licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0.

There are about 3,500 hillforts across the UK from the Iron Age and Late Bronze Age. They can be absolutely huge, as big as 20 hectares and you often need some distance to appreciate them.

"Gwal y Filiast" by Karen Sawyeris licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0.
Gwal y Filiast” by Karen Sawyer is licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0.
"Silbury Hill,nr.Avebury" by Dave Yatesis licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0.
Silbury Hill,nr.Avebury” by Dave Yates is licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0.

This prehistoric mound is part of a landscape designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site which includes Avebury and Stonehenge.

West Kennet Long Barrow – Interior” by Ark3pix is licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0.

You don’t often get to see inside a prehistoric monument.

"Ring of Brodgar, Orkney" by Stevekeiretsuis licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0.
Ring of Brodgar, Orkney” by Stevekeiretsu is licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0.

Orkney is renowned for its prehistoric sites, including Skara Brae (a Neolithic settlement) and the ring of Brogdar, a stone circle.

"Castlerigg Stone Circle, Cumbria" by SusieAnnais licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0.
Castlerigg Stone Circle, Cumbria” by SusieAnna is licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0.
"4 Ballynoe Stone Circle 1" by Irishdeltaforceis licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0.
4 Ballynoe Stone Circle 1” by Irishdeltaforce is licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0.
"Woodhenge, Wiltshire, Inglaterra, 2014-08-12" by Diego Delsois licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0.
Woodhenge, Wiltshire, Inglaterra, 2014-08-12” by Diego Delso is licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0.
"Stonehenge from the Distance" by ExtraMilePhotoUKis licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0.
Stonehenge from the Distance” by ExtraMilePhotoUK is licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0.

And of course no trip through the UK’s prehistory would be complete without Stonehenge!

Exploring WLM: Romans

The UK is rich with heritage and the Romans left behind their mark on the landscape. Below are some striking pictures from the UK’s first two editions of Wiki Loves Monuments. Will you be adding your photos to the mix this year?

https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Termas_romanas_de_BATH.jpg
The Roman baths at Bath. “Termas romanas de BATH” by Francisco Conde Sánchez is licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0.

Bath is a very popular subject for photographers, and it’s easy to see why!

Hadrian's Wall by Tilman2007
08-Hadrians Wall-034” by Tilman2007 is licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0

Marking the northern extent of the Roman Empire, Hadrian’s Wall stretches for miles.

Remains of the Roman baths in Leicester
The Jewry Wall in Leicester. “Remains of a Roman bath house” by Purusothaman is licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0
Masonry of the Jewry Wall by Purusothaman
Masonry of the Jewry Wall. “Roman bath house232” by Purusothaman is licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0
Banded masonry at the Jewry Wall by Purusothaman
Banded masonry at the Jewry Wall. “Roman bath house40-1” by Purusothaman is licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0

The Roman baths at Leicester have distinctive bands of red brick

North Leigh Roman Villa by Lolalatorre
North Leigh Roman Villa” by Lolalatorre is licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0.
A Roman capital reused as a font at St Andrew's Church, Wroxeter
A Roman capital reused as a font at St Andrew’s Church, Wroxeter. “THE FONT A RECYCLED ROMAN CAPITAL” by HARTLEPOOLMARINA2014 is licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0.
Two Roman columns reused as gate piers at St Andrew's Church, Wroxeter by HARTLEPOOLMARINA2014
Two Roman columns reused as gate piers at St Andrew’s Church, Wroxeter. “WROXETER CHURCH OF ST ANDREW” by HARTLEPOOLMARINA2014 is licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0.

Roman buildings provided a handy source of building materials, and the buildings were often dismantled for the stone to be used elsewhere.

Chester Roman amphitheatre by Emdee314
Chester Roman amphitheatre. “Roman Amphitheatre” by Emdee314 is licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0.

Every good Roman town needed an amphitheatre. There were at least 230 across the Empire.

York city walls with Roman foundations by Mkooiman
York city walls with Roman foundations. “York UK Wall Roman Foundation” by Mkooiman is licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0.

Roman walls made a good foundation for later buildings, as seen here at York.

The Roman lighthouse at Dover by Brendaannc
Roman light house Dover” by Brendaannc is licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0.
The Roman walls of the fort at Portchester, later adapted into a medieval castle. Photo by Johan Bakker.
The Roman walls of the fort at Portchester, later adapted into a medieval castle. “1229190-Portchester Castle” by Johan Bakker is licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0.

The defences of an abandoned Roman fort made an easily reused site for later castles.

The Roman town walls at Colchester by Maria
Colchester’s Roman walls. “The Roman Town Wall” by Maria is licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0.
The baths within the remains of Wroxeter Roman city by Stewart Watkiss
The baths within the remains of Wroxeter Roman city. “Wroxeter Roman City remains” by Stewart Watkiss is licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0.

Want to know more about Roman Britain? Wikipedia has a wealth of information about it, including a recreation of a Roman fort by Rotherham Museums and Archives. Get snapping ready for September!

One Million Images

Stockholm Palace. An entry from last year’s Wiki Loves Monuments. Photo by Arild Vågen CC-BY-SA 3.0.

One million images uploaded so far to the world’s largest photo contest – Wiki Loves Monuments.

In this year’s competition so far 150,000 images from 40 different countries have been uploaded. This means that since Wiki Loves Monuments started four years ago more than 1,000,000 photos of cultural heritage have been shared through Wikimedia Commons.

Wiki Loves Monuments is the world’s largest photography contest, and aims to collect images under a free licence for use on Wikimedia sites to document historic sites and monuments. Now in its fourth year, 5,000 people from around the world have taken part this month.

Volunteer Wikimedians organise the contest in each country, with the winning photos from national contests elevated to an international jury in November. The international jury will announce the top ten international photos and the overall best picture winner in December.

“With over one million free images of heritage sites across the world, Wiki Loves Monuments is one of the world’s most important projects dealing with history today”, says Deror Lin, the international coordinator of the competition. “Year after year, volunteers document hundreds of thousands of heritage sites across the world, upload the images to the Internet under a free licence, for the benefit of the current generation and the next generations. These people display the splendor of creativity and culture in their countries”.

The photos will be uploaded to Wikimedia Commons under a free licence, so they can be used by anybody, for any purpose, as long as the photographer is credited. Many of the photos will appear in Wikipedia, the world’s largest encyclopedia, and all will be available to download at no cost.