This post was written by Wikimedia UK volunteer User:Rock drum
On 7 September 2013, Wikimedians and amateur photographers gathered in the Grade II-listed St Michael’s Church for Wikipedia Takes Chester, a day-long photo scavenger hunt, held to increase participation in Wiki Loves Monuments UK (which you can still take part in!). Events like this are always good fun; you get a chance to explore a new city with a view to improving coverage of it on Wikimedia projects (and because of the free licence – potentially anywhere).
They’re also valuable in several ways. Like much of the UK, there were many images of Chester already on Wikimedia Commons. However, many were of poor quality, and more still were poorly categorised. The aim of the day was to produce high quality photos of Chester, but specifically of the Grade I and Grade II* listed buildings that qualified for entrance to Wiki Loves Monuments.
This sort of event is great for outreach. At Wikipedia Takes Chester, and at Wikipedia Takes Coventry this time last year, many people attended who would not normally come along to Wikimedia events. A huge range of photographers attend these events, from the point-and-shoot-wielding amateur to the very-expensive-DSLR-toting professionals. And of course – as with anywhere in the Wikimedia movement – each group and their contributions are as welcome as the other.
I would urge anyone reading this to consider making the most of the last few few days of September and go out into your town or city and contribute to the world’s largest photography competition.