Page last updated at 21:21 GMT, Monday, 2 November 2009

Phantom 'town' appears on Google

Roy Bayfield
Roy Bayfield says that Google has Argleton in its databse

An online search engine's description of a rural Lancashire spot as "a town" is baffling local people.

Argleton appears on Google Maps as a small town furnished with amenities, but it does not actually exist, apart from a field and a few trees.

Some people have described the place, nestled between Aughton and Ormskirk, as a "phantom town" that only ever appears on the online search engine.

Google said: "While [most information] is correct there are... errors."

Roy Bayfield from nearby Edge Hill University became so intrigued by the description that he decided to walk there.

He was greeted by a gate, a field and cluster of trees but no houses, businesses, pubs or even a phone box.

"It is strange," Mr Bayfield said, "especially because chiropractors, nurseries and even dating agencies are listed under Argleton.

"Google have Argleton in their group database and various other websites use it to do their listings, that's why its possible to see all these businesses that supposedly are based there."

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