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Friday, 5 July, 2002, 14:32 GMT 15:32 UK
World link for rural community
View of Cilycwm
Cilycwm attracts thousands of visitors to its website
A tiny village which boasts about 40 families in Carmarthenshire has opened itself up to thousands of visitors every month after setting up a community website.

Residents of Cilycwm near Llandovery turned to internet technology to promote their village and have been inundated with surfers ever since.


The success of this site has far exceeded anything we expected

David Bevan, Project developer

The site, which is generating over a thousand hits a month, is also being used as a way to fund a much-needed village hall.

Project developer David Bevan, who lives in the rural farming community, has been thrilled at how the site had taken off.

"We wanted to let the world know about our great little community," he said.

"Unfortunately the only thing we don't have in the village is a community hall.

Junction Pool in the Upper Towy Valley
Attractions like Junction Pool are featured on the site

"We have tried to get a lease on an old school house which is standing empty and contacted various organisations for financial help," he explained.

The villagers were asked what resources they could provide for the upkeep of the hall and decided to incorporate an advertising directory of local businesses on the website.

"At the moment, there are about 80 businesses advertising at a charge of 25 a year and we are hoping to get over a hundred by the end of the summer.

"This will mean an income of 2,500 a year, which will be used to help the village hall fund and is helping the local businesses get more trade," said Mr Bevan.

World-wide visitors

The site features local history, community news and a pictorial record of the area and has attracted surfers worldwide.

"At the moment the site is serving a triple purpose - it is generating money for the village hall.

"It is being used by the local community as an information point and as a way of attracting tourists.

"The success of this site has far exceeded anything we expected," he said.

Ex-Pats

Andrew Mabbutt, who built the sitem, said people from all over the world have visited the site and contacted the web team.

"We have had lots of ex-pats looking us up and people who have come across us and expressed an interest in visiting.

"People from as far away as Canada have come to the site.

"We are now going to get in touch with Welsh societies in America, New Zealand, South Africa and America to make links with," he added.


Where I Live, South West Wales
See also:

17 Jun 02 | South Asia
09 Apr 01 | Media reports
16 Oct 01 | Science/Nature
20 Feb 02 | Wales
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