List of Interesting Sites
Berkshire(BRK) Cheshire(CHS) Cornwall(CON)  Derbyshire(DBY) Devon(DEV)
Dorset(DOR) Essex(ESS) Gloucestershire(GLS) Hampshire(HAM) Herefordshire(HEF)
 Kent(KEN) Leicestershire(LEI) London Tourist Guide Middlesex(MDX) Nottinghamshire(NTT)
Oxfordshire(OXF) Shropshire(SAL) Somerset(SOM) Staffordshire(STS) Surrey(SRY)
Sussex(SSX) Wiltshire(WIL) Worcestershire(WOR) Bridgwater Tourist Guide Chard Tourist Guide
Taunton Tourist Guide Kosher Tourism Slide Show UK Information Wessex Index
Advertising Camping Fireworks Gardens of Wessex Great British Diary
Guest Houses Hotels On The Beach Pantomimes Pubs & Restaurants
Theatre Wessex Films
Wessex Hall of Fame
Wessex Roots Streakers Hall of Shame
 Boxing Cricket Equestrian Football Golf
Horseracing Ice Skating Rowing Rugby Tennis 
lick on to the exact word
Business UK
Reference / Education
Shopping UK


  Welcome to Wessex Tourist Board. Press Control+B to Bookmark this site for later reference.
If you wish your website to be added to this list call 0845 868 2810
or email : info@wessextouristboard.org.uk
Almost everyone, at one time or another, likes to leaf through an atlas and dream of far off lands. This fantastically well presented online atlas will let you do just that whether for pleasure or study. Offering colourful political and physical maps of just about every country in the world, the real value is in the extra information that accompanies them. Aside from details on the geography and culture of each country, you'll also find statistics on everything from rainfall to GNP.
Expedia Maps
After overcoming early teething problems, Expedia has grown into the best travel portal on the web. Using it is simply a matter of entering the name of a city or area anywhere in the world into the search engine and up pops a map. They're not the most detailed you'll find but the fact that the whole world is covered is a bonus. The really handy aspect of the facility is the list of local links that appears alongside the map, giving you a real insight into the area.
One of the first sites to map the entire world online, the scope of Mapquest is truly stunning. Simply enter any location worldwide, from the village where you live to Mexico City, and within seconds you'll be presented with a road map of the area. You'd be hard pressed to use the maps as your only mode of navigation but to get a rough idea of your location, they're ideal and even go down to street level. There's also an easy-to-use route planner and a well-stocked shop if you require a more detailed map.
This site doesn't provide online maps as such but is so beautifully designed and contains so much other information it's well worth a look for geographers and intrepid travellers alike. You can purchase a map of any area you can think of, either in a digital downloadable format or the more traditional paper variety. You can also access travel guides and an excellent educational section, which contains trivia, links, quizzes and more.
Now, this is impressive. Again, it's confined to Great Britain but the level of detail is absolutely incredible. Simply enter any postcode in the country and the site will pinpoint it almost exactly. The street maps are also surprisingly accurate. If you're on holiday in another part of the country or on a business trip this invaluable site could save countless wrong turnings and cross words. If you don't know the relevant postcode you can also search by place or street name.
Railroad, Subway and Tram Maps
As anyone who has ever attempted to negotiate the tube will realise, finding your way around an alien transport system can be very confusing at the best of times. Imagine being stuck in a foreign country and not being able to understand the signs or ask for help. That's where this useful site comes in. It contains maps of over 300 underground and train systems around the world, all of them in colour and all of them detailed enough to be printed out and taken with you.
If you live in the capital, you'll be well aware that London's maze of streets can prove to be a minefield even for the most streetwise Cockney. So if you're visiting the capital you'd be well advised to take a look at this fantastically detailed site. The street maps of the capital are the equal of anything you'll find in an A-Z while the road atlases of the rest of UK are also colourful, familiar and easy to follow.
This site may not help you find your way home but it will certainly give a new perspective on the world. It's a huge library of amazingly detailed aerial shots taken from satellites orbiting the Earth. Even more impressive, you can search the site for a specific area and even look for an image of the place where you live, which you have the opportunity to purchase if you wish. Each entry is also accompanied by links to Encarta so you can find out about each place in more detail.


& Thesaurus
Cancer Web - The On-line Medical Dictionary
The On-line Medical dictionary from Cancer Web is a huge searchable database of terms and expressions used in the medical profession. The quantity of words and terms, taken direct from Webster's Dictionary, is comprehensive but it also includes a fair amount of non-medical words. The accidental inclusion of unrelated words, such as 'dog', doesn't inspire confidence and so lets down an otherwise excellent resource. Finding medical words without using the search facility can be difficult, due to the sheer quantity of data, which isn't presented in the most user friendly format.
Kadow's Internet Dictionary
Kadow's Internet and Unix dictionary is not the most exciting of websites, but then again it's a technical reference and you can't please all of the people all of the time. Categorised alphabetically by initial, the quantity of entries is large but the descriptions themselves are somewhat brief. If you are totally new to the Internet this isn't an ideal place to start learning. However, if you already have a basic understanding then Kadow's is definitely worth a look when you pick up a new geek word in conversation.
Dictionary.com is not just an online dictionary, it has a hyperlink to Thesuarus.com which makes it a useful resource for anyone who has something to write. Other features include an online translator which works in a number of different European languages and word of the day email facility, allowing you to have a new word automatically emailed to you each day, a sure-fire way to help improve your vocabulary.
Duhaime's Law Dictionary
With the Internet now firmly established as a basic business tool and e-commerce becoming an increasingly important way of selling, companies are no longer limited to selling to local customers. Although doing business overseas has been made easier, it means learning a whole new legal and trading system. That's where Duhaime's Law Dictionary comes in. Lloyd Duhaime has researched, written and published this free online legal dictionary, covering all the basics of World and American law.
Investorwords claims to be the most comprehensive financial glossary available both on and offline. Over 5,000 words and terms are arranged alphabetically into groups of links that take you direct to a concise definition, in plain English. Each of these descriptions contain further links to other related words, where appropriate, making it easy to work your way around the site. As you would expect, this website doesn't exactly attract your admiration with its design, but then contemporary design and flashy graphics would be out of place.
Merriam-Webster Online
Although Merriam-Webster Online is published in the US it is still a very useful resource. The home page presents you with the option to search either the WWWebsters Dictionary or Thesaurus and although the tacky play on words may put you off the search is conducted quickly and the results are remarkably concise. Some English variations in spelling, such as colour, are also included. 
There are additional attractions in the form of Word of the day, Word for the Wise and word games. Again, the only down side is the design - this website looks more than a little cheap.
Thesaurus.com is the sister site to Dictionary.com, with exactly the same look, logo and layout, but in yellow instead of blue. The data for Thesaurus.com comes straight from the renowned Roget's Thesaurus and is published online by Lexico. To add extra functionality the entire English language has been divided into six broad categories by the nature and meaning of the words within. Other additional features are a word of the day and a selection of online word games, good for passing time at work or running up a huge phone bill at home.
Travlang's Translating Dictionaries
It would be ridiculous to expect a free translating dictionary to cover every language currently spoken by man, but Travlang's is having a pretty fair go at it. Translation between practically every European language is available as well as Latin, Africaans and Esperanto. The only down side to Travlang's is the design - the plain HTML text and logo on a watermarked page doesn't do credit to the content.


Rather more than Hobson's Choice, in fact, with information not just on the more than 180 UK universities and colleges, but on establishments of education worldwide - be it at school or college level, first degree, or post-grad and professional qualifications. Information on global careers means you can ensure that you are obtaining the correct qualifications for working as a lawyer in New York or New Guinea say, as well as getting an idea of the lifestyle awaiting you there, with local club, pub and gig guides.
There's a host of sites telling you how to have weeks of riotous fun as a student. The National Union of Students site is a little worthier than that. Essential stuff all the same. Find out what your grant entitlements are. Find out what to do if your grant, horror of horrors, doesn't arrive. And for a wider perspective, get the NUS's take and action on Government moves affecting you the student.
Study UK
Very useful - in fact, indispensable - for students coming from abroad to study in the UK. Find out about UK universities, colleges and short courses. Discover about the cost of living, the vagaries of the UK's travel network and the idiosyncrasies of the lifestyle. Good news pages to discover the latest moves and legislation in UK education and a friendly chatroom so you won't feel so far away from home.
UK Universities and Colleges
Search engine Yahoo has saved you a lot of time and trouble (though be careful how you type in that Web address) by compiling the definitive listing of universities and colleges in the United Kingdom. So if you've decided on the seat of learning you want, or you're still weighing up four or five, why not click onto the link that will take you straight to the college's website and see what it has to offer.
On Campus
The Open University
With 30 years of encouraging us into distance learning courses, the Open University should know how to put together resources such as this, and it doesn't disappoint. The site roughly divides into pages on the infrastructure of the university itself - courses, fees, maps to the various study centres, access courses for disabled people and so on; and the pages about specific faculties and courses.
US Education Journal
Gone are the days when you had to choose between Reading, Salford and Aston. There's nothing (finances and fear of flying permitting) stopping you studying in Arizona or Alaska should you wish. US Education Journal offers a chance for potential students to get direct information on courses and admissions from specific American universities. Click on the map of the US to find faculties in your chosen region and subject area.
Unofficial Guides
A site in which the students themselves have their say. Of course official university websites aren't always going to paint the whole picture, and certainly won't tell you if their halls of residence come a poor second to the Black Hole of Calcutta. This resource, with links to unofficial home pages posted by existing students, started by asking first years whether their college matched up to expectations, and went on to ask school leavers what information they would like to get before they went up to university.
Student UK
Student UK is a sprawling, well-designed site that mixes entertainment and information to good effect. The music and film reviews are as good as you'll find anywhere on the net, while issues such as money, travel, health and careers are all dealt with in lively, unpatronising fashion. You can also join in the debate on the busy message boards and win attractive prizes in the regular competitions.
Schools & Colleges
Conference of Drama Schools
Noel Coward's advice would be not to put your daughter on the stage at all, of course. But if you must, ensure that you check the CDS website first. The Conference was formed to encourage the highest standards in training for actors and stage managers, as well as hosting its own training. A look at the members' roster - RADA, the Central School of Speech and Drama, the Guildford School of Acting - confirms that quality.
Montessori World
Not one for the Victorian parents among us, the Montessori system has the aim of allowing young children "to grow naturally, to retain their individuality and develop their own unique personality". And the network of nursery schools has spread over the last few decades, from the original organisation in Italy to reach, it seems, almost every country in the world. Wherever you are, there's a Montessori school near you, and this site will tell you how to find it.
School Search
Very handy resource for parents wanting to check on the relative performances of the schools on their list. Simply type in the name of the school plus its postcode, and up pops its latest league table performance plus a copy of the last Ofsted report. It's a useful alternative to hiking through lists of schools and reams of figures, and best of all it's very quick and absurdly simple to get to what you want.
Excite - Schools and Colleges
You can tell a lot about a school by looking at its website. So click onto this useful listing of UK school sites by search engine Excite. There are listings of schools from John O' Groats to Lands End, providing useful details on curricular and extra-curricular activities, sports and drama as well as extra-mural work. It is often handy for getting the pupils' views rather than just that of the head teacher and governors.
The stated aim of the Education Exchange, producers of Schoolsite, is to "help every school in the UK realise and contribute to the educational value of the internet." Simply register for free web space, tell Schoolsite when the site goes live, referring to EDEX's frequently asked questions section if you have any problem, and they will hook you up. The impressive listing of schools already linked shows it's an offer many have taken up.
The starting point for parents checking out independent schools in the UK. Complete and regularly updated details of 1300 accredited independent schools are listed, and search facilities are built into the site to let you search for schools that meet your criteria. There is also lots of more general information about the independent sector and how to go about choosing the right school for your child.
The Literacy Hour
If it's tough for the tots taking their school reading work home, spare a thought for the parents. This site, though, is an excellent support. It gives parents hints on how to approach the 'literacy hour' - introducing the kids to the book, talking about the cover, making the whole thing friendlier by talking about the author and discussing whether the book is happy or sad.
UK Boarding Schools Directory
Comprehensive listing of UK boarding schools, both primary and secondary. There's a full index of schools and useful contacts of course, plus details on the arrangements for visiting and assessing each school, and advice on whether boarding will suit your child. You'll find full curricular details and information about the league table performance of each school and - swallow hard - details of fees. There's also a useful section on financial assistance and bursaries available.

Freeserve Revision
Proving that Dixons' Internet service provider has a few more tricks up its sleeve apart from single-handedly revolutionising the ISP market in Britain and selling bucketloads of shares - the company has some A1 content too. There are sections for each age band of the national curriculum and for the core subjects of English, Maths and Science. Key subject areas are highlighted and you simply click for revision tasks or tests.
GCSE Bitesize Revision
What the BBC claims to be the "first ever revision guide via TV, books and the internet". Bitesize is a nicely produced site, with slick graphics of a smiling shark (bitesize, geddit?) to guide you around. As the name suggests, the site doesn't attempt to talk you through endless reams of text - there's very little point in that approach online anyway - but instead provides digestible, bite-size gobbets of information to assist your GCSE revision, and if you get stuck you can email a teacher with a question.
George Abbot School
On the face of it this site is a guide to the school's library - which we're sure is very good. But more useful to the rest of us is a list of links to other revision and exam preparation sites, targeted specifically at GCSE pupils. Here you will find a load of sites dealing with Maths, Science, History, Geography, Art, Music, Drama and general revision practices. It is also interesting to get an insight into examiners' marking schemes on the NEAB site.
A-level revision
Assistance for those worried their A-level grades may be insufficient to secure a place at the university of their choice. This site is a comprehensive collection of links to pages covering all the main A-level subjects. Nominated for a Yell! 99 Award (Yell being the online version of Yellow Pages) this site is certainly as thorough as you could wish. Psychology has recently been added to an impressive list of subjects that already includesBiology, Chemisty, Geography, Physics... well take a look for yourself.
Project GCSE
We winced a little when we read 'the only cool revision site on the Net'. But apart from trying a little too hard to make doing your homework sound hip, this site has lots to recommend it. All the core GCSE subjects are covered. Click within history, say, and you raise a list of key revision topics. Click on each of those and you get a series of brief revision notes covering all the key factors to be swotted up.
Revision Tips
Another example of schools and colleges using the Web to share, for free, some of their accumulated wisdom with other suffering students. There is nothing very flashy on this site posted by Longhill High School in Rottingdean, Brighton. Instead, there is a section of good, commonsense, easy-to-follow tips on structuring your revision to be as effective as possible, asking for help from the right places and not panicking when things go wrong.
Maths Help
Hands up anyone who can work out what this site does. Well okay, the name's a bit of a giveaway. It is of course an excellent resource offering free help and advice with problems in Mathematics and Statistics at GCSE, A-level, BTEC, GNVQ and Foundation year degree level. The deal is this. You email them your question. They email back with hints and general advice. What could be simpler or more vital than that?

Digital Education Network
Or "education for the 21st Century" as the DEN bills itself, so it's obviously planning on being around for some time to come. Whether you're a student, an education professional or just browsing, this is the place to come for an exhaustive database of courses the world over. Click on Thailand, click on media studies and the site will find a course for you to pursue.
Education World
Education World is "where the educators go to learn" according to the puff. More to the point, it is where adults can go to find literally thousands of courses on every conceivable subject the world over. We can't state this strongly enough - you don't have to study at your local college anymore; if the course you want is at the University of Missouri, then sign up for a distance learning course there.
On Course
Boldly billing itself as the UK's "number one course website," On Course has a bold tilt at Floodlight's domination of the London course listing market. It's actually a very simple site but incredibly comprehensive and easy to navigate. Your first port of call is by broad subject area - Art, Craft and Design, Computer and Office, Fashion and Beauty and so on. These links then take you to the individual colleges and you simply click on their logos to reveal details of courses and whom you need to contact.
The Learning Network
Too much online learning is a pale imitation of the 'real' face-to-face, learning environment, so it's a delight to discover a site that addresses the demands and difficulties of distance learning and tailors a site to suit. The Learning Network is the online arm of the Open College, itself a sister organisation to the Open University. The site is devoted to promoting access to tertiary education for as many of us as possible. Browse and order materials, register for courses, tutor support, the lot.
National Open College Network
The National Open College Network is one of the largest awarding bodies in the UK and accessibility to education is what it's all about. It offers awards to adult learners, and in particular to those for whom more traditional qualifications are not available or inappropriate. The NOCN operates a national credit framework through 31 local Open College Networks based across the UK. And it offers just about every course you could dream of.
The National Organisation for Adult Learning is the leading non-governmental organisation for adult learning in England and Wales. Its aim? To give as many adults as possible the opportunity to return to education. A large part of its work is campaigning, undertaking research, hassling the government and generally raising the profile of adult education.
There's no getting round this. If you want to study at higher or further education level in the Big Smoke then you need Floodlight as your guide. The paper version of this crucial resource has been writing the book on studying in London for years now, and the online version is even better. Why? Well it would be a pretty comprehensive local newsagent in Perth or Penzance if it stocked a London listing magazine, whereas the website is open to us all.
Open University Business School
Another offshoot of the marvellous Open University, and one equally good at encouraging adult education via the Web. Covering management education in this case, OUBS pulls on the more than 30 years' experience of the Open University and is one of the world's largest business schools, with more than 25,000 managers a year studying. Click on to the Experience page to get a flavour of working and learning with the OUBS.




A few years ago the encyclopaedia became available on CD for those with a couple of hundred pounds to spare. Now, thankfully, the publishers have seen fit to publish it free online, so everyone can delve in and look for the information they need.
The opening page changes daily, including today's news, sport and business. As the news is supplied by the Washington Post it has a distinctly US slant, but UK specific content is promised soon. You can also choose to search a wide range of topic headings, including arts, books, education, politics, philosophy and religion. 
However if you keyed in the URL you will doubtless be looking for the actual Britannica Encyclopaedia entries themselves. The search is quick and painless and comes up with a number of resources. There will doubtless be the main encyclopaedia entry, but you might also get a few alternative entries suggested as well on related topics. You will also be presented to links to a number of other resources, including Merriam-Webster's Collegiate Dictionary and a wide range of magazines. Again the US slant comes out, but UK material is also suggested occasionally.
Despite being the first people to use a pun that was all but inevitable, Encyberpedia is a very rewarding stopping shop for those after an intensive source of material. Not exactly an encyclopaedia, it provides a list of links to the people in the know on a colossal range of subjects. It's a rather scattershot collection and finding the exact information you require is a trial-and-error process; but the site is connected to a dazzling array of expert knowledge, often of an academic pedigree.
Atlapedia online
If you're after information or facts and figures on nearly every country in the world, then look no further than the Atlapedia online. The information is almost overly comprehensive, including details of main exports, primary products, the military, communication, economy and other areas to numerous to mention. There's even a brief account of each country's history from WW2 to 1990. Two world maps are available, geographical and political, which can be viewed by selecting the required country from a drop-down list and hitting a link button.
Encarta Online
Typical Microsoft: copious content and a slick, smooth lay-out lure you into the online version of their popular CD-Rom encyclopaedia, and almost before you realise, you're paying the subscription fee. It costs $6.95 a month or $49.95 annually, but the product looks so nice and the usability is so wonderfully streamlined, it's almost worth it. The articles aren't as studious as the Encyclopaedia Britannica, but they're well-structured and the internal links whisk you to every conceivable related angle on the subject.
Encyclopaedia of the Orient
The Encyclopaedia of the Orient is a very individual online reference guide, containing facts specific to North Africa and the Middle East. Information ranges from historical accounts to passages on people, towns and terminology. The encyclopaedia can be used by conducting a keyword search or by browsing the A-Z of entries. Navigation between search results and the many areas of the site is quick and easy, by using the A-Z of entries down the left-hand side of the page.
There are over 14,000 articles in Encyclopaedia.com, all taken from The Concise Columbia Electronic Encyclopaedia, shortened and published here online for free. The scope of the topics covered is wide, but the shortened entries are a little too brief to offer the depth you would expect. However, Encyclopedia.com is an excellent starting point to help you conduct a larger search, or a great one-stop for those looking for a few tit-bits of information.
Children's online encyclopaedias are few and far between, despite a fairly obvious need for them with so many children having Internet access at school or at home. Over the last few months Letsfindout.com has grown both in the number of entries and in the depth of information offered. It now contains excellent articles on a very wide range of subjects, perfect for supplementing that late night homework essay.
Tech Encyclopaedia
The Tech Encyclopaedia, a sub-section of CMP's Tech Web, provides highly informative and easy to understand descriptions of practically every computer related term around. All those apparently meaningless acronyms, such http, as are also included with a accurate description and often a brief insight into the possible future of the technology in question. This is a browser bookmark must for anyone in regular communications with their companies IT department. It doesn't look half-bad either, the layout is fairly standard but proves easy and quick to use.


History House
Treading the fine line between the intellectual seriousness of History Today and the plain wackiness of the likes of Fortean Times, History House takes a wry look at the lesser known stories and figures in history. Whether it is the tale of Kamal Ataturk banning the fez from daily wear in Turkey, or the curious sexual foibles of Hitler's high command, history will never be a series of dry dates again if you look at this site.
We all know what happened at certain points in history - it's all there in the text books after all. But what if? Uchronia is concerned with the million what if's of the past - What if the moon didn't exist? What if the Second World War had never happened or if Germany had won? There's an enormous canon of works here. The amount written on the subject shows our fascination with what might have been, and can give us a different take on what is.
Yahoo History
Now history has to be one of the most commonly occurring words on the World Wide Web, and there's not much point in your trawling through the history of country music when you're after web pages dealing with medieval living. Your first stop should be an excellent resource such as the one provided by search engine Yahoo. They've done the legwork for you, and you'll find section headings from Alternative History right through to Web Directories.
History Today
The UK's most-respected history magazine has something of an intellectually fearsome reputation. But if you're expecting a dry-as-dust website, fear not. Excellently organised into Ancient, Medieval, Early modern and so forth, you can also search by subject - politics, military and so on. Packed with book reviews, competitions and resources for students whether at school or research level, this site elegantly covers the popular and serious ends of the subject without falling down on either.
Really enjoyable site for anyone who yearns to know more about ancient Egypt. Manages to be a weighty historical resource and very good fun at the same time (just take a trip to the Clickable Mummy to give you a whole new take on the preserving process). There's a dynasty by dynasty list of the pharaohs, a beginner's guide to the gods and beliefs of ancient Egypt, and an overview on the art, architecture, tombs and temples of the past.
Psychistory is the science of historical motivation; 'putting the world on the couch' as this fascinating history of the American Institute for Psychohistory would have it. It aims to combine the insights of modern psychotherapy with the research methodology of history. So we know there was a Gulf War, but what complex of thoughts created it? What events in our childhood lead to war and social violence? Sometimes more questions than answers.
Spartacus Educational
This site is put together by secondary school teachers, so you can be sure that not only is the content hugely engrossing, reliable and neatly marshalled into date and subject periods, it's also tailored towards the needs of the History National Curriculum. It majors on modern history, and themed areas include Religion and Society, the trade union movement, the textile industry, encyclopaedia of the First World War and emancipation of women.


Back to Wessex Tourist Board Index