Thanks for checking out this page! Hopefully, you’re a WordPress user in the Derby, Ilkeston or Nottingham area of the East Midlands, UK.
Whether you’re a blogger, developer, business owner or hobbiest you’re possibly interested in meeting in person for informal, friendly discussion and learning opportunities.
- This page is a holding page until something more permanent is set up
- A couple of 302 redirects forward wpderby.co.uk and wpnottingham.co.uk here
- If you have thoughts/ideas, please leave a public comment rather than sending an email
Sign up to the WordPress East Midlands email list.
WordPress Meetup: Initial Thoughts
Existing Meet Up Groups
A search on MeetUp.com shows there are groups for programmers in the East Midlands but perhaps Derby/Nottingham people would like to stay more local and focus on WordPress only.
What I learned about MeetUp.com however, is that is costs money (a monthly fee) to create a group. It seems like EventBrite is a popular alternative because there’s no subscription.
However, the WordPress Home dashboard is integrated with Meetup.com and will automatically pull in local WordPress events. This is powerful and would make the investment in a Meetup.com worthwhile.
Since there are no WordPress events running in Nottingham, the nearest known events (at least those listed on Meetup.com) are shown in the results:
My Interest in WordPress
To clarify, I’m referring to the WordPress.org open source distribution, not WordPress.com.
Although both versions are developed by Automattic and were founded by Matt Mullenweg it is the self hosted .org version I’m interested in.
However, perhaps catering to both .org and .com would be better. What do you think?
WAMP is now my preferred localhost environment.
WordPress is powerful, flexible and free. However, there are many mistakes easily made with the platform and out-of-the-box it’s susceptible to brute force attacks.
My goal is to learn and understand more about WordPress. In the spirit of transparency, my business agenda is to source clients if they feel a consultant would benefit them.
I’m not an aggressive, self-serving sales guy so I wouldn’t want to do anything that ever compromises the quality of a regular meet up.
Meet Up Subject Matter, Topics & Discussions
There’s plenty of discussions to be had around WordPress.
One of the best ways to keep up with WordPress news is to subscribe to a good podcast like Your Website Engineer, which is run by Automattic employee and developer Dustin Hartzler.
While these podcasts are great to listen to, there’s no real time interaction.
I’d like to informally network with others face to face and have actual conversations about WordPress topics.
I posted a topic on a website forum I visit a lot, asking for WordPress meetup ideas. I got a little feedback and some good tips. Someone on that thread mentioned a WordPress meetup in Derby.
Some WordPress users will be complete novices while others may be veteran developers. I had a conversation with my #SmallBizHour tweetchat co-host Steph and she said she couldn’t get to grips with the finer points of WordPress.
Have a listen to our conversation below. Maybe you’re currently in a similar position to Steph – frustrated.
Perhaps a WP meetup would benefit you if you’re a beginner.
Venues, Logistics & Overheads
Since I’m from Ilkeston, I could travel to either Derby or Nottingham quite easily.
There are some established events in both cities that have been open to the idea of using their venue.
I did a little research using the Facebook audience insights tool and it looks as though the most people with “WordPress” listed as an interest in their Facebook profile are from Nottingham:
I met with someone from Heanor and we discussed putting on an initial session on the 16th September 2015.
The first meetup was interesting and was a demonstration of building a localhost server stack. We had a few people come along but the other organiser decided not to continue hosting in Heanor because of the initial low turnout.
Personally, numbers do not bother me since this is something you earn over time. Plus, it was the first meeting, so the early results should not be an indicator of the long term outcome.
It’s true that the research seems to indicate Nottingham has the most potential and a greater chance of attracting more attendees.
Whether this is a free or paid event remains to be seen. If there are rental overheads it would need to involve a fee to cover costs.
- It would be good to have laptops and WI-FI with a projector, for obvious reasons
- Demoing frameworks, plugins, local hosts, themes, websites, code and more is going to be useful
- To get started, a pub or function room might be the beginning but secure WI-FI access with decent bandwidth could be an issue here
If you’re reading this and you believe you know a suitable venue it would be appreciated if you’d leave a comment or contact me.
So far, the venue used by Tech Nottingham is the most attractive. The venue is called Antenna and it is on Beck Street, near Huntington Street, Nottingham, about 5 minutes walk from the Victoria Center.
I’m a card-carrying member of Antenna in Nottingham and drift in and out the building to meet with clients or work in the large bar area. You wouldn’t need to be a member to attend a meet up hosted there.
The bar and function room of Antenna is used by many existing technology, digital and software events every month.
The room is spacious and comfortable. The bar serves a selection of beers and hot beverages, plus food.
Free Wi-Fi is included. You can log on and enter the password to use the internet on your device. The password can be obtained from the bar staff.
If you have any tips or ideas on where a WordPress Derby meetup could be held, let it be known in the comments.
Here’s some of the social media properties I’ve set up.
Let’s use these Twitter hashtags:
- WordPress social club for beginner to intermediate to advanced
- Monthly meetups, early evening in Derby or Nottingham
- Bloggers, developers, businesses, web consultants
- WordPress.org open source distribution
- Informal and friendly
- Topics similar to podcasts like Your Website Engineer
- Appropriate venue with required technology needed
- Will reach out to existing tech event venues to try to reach an arrangement
- Start off in a pub or coffee shop if no larger venue initially
- Use a Twitter monthly Hashtag chat
- Look into use of WordPress logo and trademark
- Set up on Meetup.com via the WordPress Foundation
- Move this page to a dedicated website(s) at wpnottingham.co.uk and wpderby.co.uk
Please register on the WordPress East Midlands email list and leave a comment below.