Wikimania 2007/London

From Meta, a Wikimedia project coordination wiki
London, UK - Wikimania Candidate City, 2007
The London Wikimania 2007 congratulates Taipei on their successful bid

London offers Wikimania - the annual international Wikimedia conference - everything in one easily accessible, well-connected location. We present a Wikimania conference that is not just 'in' London, but also invites attendees to make their own use of what London has to offer.

We offer a central location in pleasant campus surroundings, in a world cultural, political and financial hub which is the most ethnically diverse city in the world: a perfect bridge to all continents.

Londres offre à Wikimania - le congrès annuel international Wikimedia - tout dans un facilement accessible, endroit bien-relié. Nous présentons une conférence de Wikimania qui n'est pas simplement « à Londres » mais invitons également des participants à faire leur propre utilisation de ce que Londres offre.

Nous offrons un endroit central dans des environnements plaisants, dans un hub culturel, politique et financier du monde qui est la ville le plus diverse éthniquement dans le monde: un pont parfait à tous les continents.

London bietet Wikimania - die jährliche, internationale Wikimedia-Konferenz - alles in zugänglichem einem leicht, gut-verbundene Position an. Wir stellen eine Wikimania Konferenz dar, die nicht nur „in“ London ist, sonder auch Teilnehmer ein, zu bilden ihren eigenen Gebrauch von, was London anbieten.

Wir bieten eine Position zentrale in eine angenehmen lage, in einer Weltkulturellen, politischen und finanziellen Nabe an, die die am ethnischsten verschiedene Stadt in der Welt ist: eine vollkommene Brücke zu allen Kontinenten.

Londra offre a Wikimania - la conferenza annuale internazionale di Wikimedia - tutto in una struttura facilmente accessibile e ben collegata. Presentiamo una conferenza di Wikimania che non è soltanto "a Londra", ma invita i partecipanti a sfruttare appieno e a proprio piacimento tutto ciò che Londra può offrire.

La struttura, in posizione centrale, rappresenta con le sue ramificazioni accademiche, culturali, politiche e finanziarie, un perfetto ponte verso tutti i continenti, anche per l'essenza multietnica della città.


City details[edit]

London on Wikipedia[edit]

af:Londen | als:London | ang:Lunden | ar:لندن | an:Londres | roa-rup:Londra | frp:Londres | ast:Londres |az:London | bn:লন্ডন | zh-min-nan:London | be:Лёндан | bs:London | br:Londrez | bg:Лондон | ca:Londres | cs:Londýn | cy:Llundain | da:London | de:London | et:London | el:Λονδίνο | es:Londres | eo:Londono | eu:Londres | fa:لندن | fr:Londres | fy:Londen | ga:Londain | gd:Lunnainn | gl:Londres - London | gu:લંડન | ko:런던 | hy:Լոնդոն | hi:लंदन | hr:London | io:London (Anglia) | id:London | ia:London | os:Лондон | is:London | it:Londra | he:לונדון | ka:ლონდონი | kw:Loundres | ku:London | la:Londinium | lv:Londona | lb:London | lt:Londonas | li:Londe | ln:Londoni | hu:London | mk:Лондон | ms:London | nl:Londen | ja:ロンドン | no:London | nn:London | nrm:Londres | oc:Londres | ug:لوندون | nds:London | pl:Londyn | pt:Londres | ro:Londra | ru:Лондон | sco:Lunnon | sq:Londra | scn:Londra | simple:London | sk:Londýn | sl:London | sr:Лондон | sh:London | fi:Lontoo | sv:London | ta:இலண்டன் | tt:London | th:ลอนดอน | vi:Luân Đôn | tg:Лондон | tr:Londra | uk:Лондон | vo:London | fiu-vro:London | yi:לאנדאן | zh-yue:倫敦 | zh:伦敦

Visitor's London[edit]

  • London has 17 national museums across the city.
  • A recent survey listed 6,128 licensed restaurants in London - 22% of the restaurants in the whole of Great Britain. This includes 36 Michelin star rated restaurants and covers over 50 major country cuisines.
  • London is a city of green open spaces. In total, it comes to 30% of the London area, including 147 parks and gardens and eight royal parks, including Hyde Park and Regents Park.
  • London has 3800 pubs and 233 nightclubs. Many venues are open after midnight.
  • You will often hear London described as a collection of villages. Local shops, markets, parks, and leisure venues foster a feeling of local community within a conurbation of seven million people. Some areas have a particularly strong identities and associations making London a world in one city and gives London the largest non-white population of any European city.


We can offer a choice of two possible patterns to the selection panel. These include a main conference of three or four full days with either five or four parallel presentation / discussion streams, plus hacking day(s), developers' meetings and social days all within a seven-day period.

The dates offered are in the summer, after schools and colleges have departed for their summer break (mid-July - early September) so students will be available to attend.

Summers in London are generally of fine, dry and warm 't-shirt' weather. The UK does not suffer earthquakes or extreme weather events such as monsoons, hurricanes, typhoons, etc. and it is not anticipated that there could be any need to change the dates once the conference is confirmed with UCL, who are currently holding the dates for our use.

Wikimania 2007 London Schedules
Day Date Five Streams Four streams
Activity Notes Activity Notes
Saturday 28 Jul (Set-up day) 5 (Set-up day) 5
Sunday 29 (Set-up day) 5 (Set-up day) 5
Monday 30 Hacking Day 1 Hacking Day 1
Tuesday 31 Hacking Day 1 Developer/Social Day 2,3
Wednesday 01 Aug Developer/Social Day 2,3 Developer/Social Day 2,3
Thursday 02 Developer/Social Day 2,3 Main Conference 4
Friday 03 Main Conference 4 Main Conference 4
Saturday 04 Main Conference 4 Main Conference 4
Sunday 05 Main Conference 4 Main Conference 4
Monday 06 (Tear-down) 5 (Tear-down) 5


In addition to the outreach work we plan to schools during the term prior to Wikimania (see Legacy below) we have been discussing with a number of London schools the possibility of running a 'Wikiday' for pupils (12-18) during the Wikimania event itself. This would involve seminars by and for school pupils about the use of Wikimedia Foundation resources in schools. We would aim to involve at least one London school from each of the four main secondary education sectors: a state grammar school, a comprehensive school, a city academy and a private school. In addition, we hope to partner each of these schools with an IT-equipped twin school in the developing world, to encourage dialogue about the use of technology in education between staff and pupils in the partnered schools. It is hoped that the twinned schools would be able to participate in the pupils' Wikimania seminars via videoconferencing. It is hoped that both Computer Aid International, which is based in London, and the One Laptop Per Child association will assist us in ensuring the schools we partner with in the developing world have sufficient IT equipment to enable them to participate effectively.

Indications so far are that there is both teacher and pupil interest and we would wish to promote this from both the aspects of getting young multi-lingual editors actively involved, and educating them about how best to correctly utilise the free information available on the WMF projects for their school projects and to expand their general knowledge.

Whilst we would welcome some of the older pupils into the main streams taking place on that day we would provide a separate lecture theatre within the conference zone for the remainder, with the assistance of teachers and other trained helpers. The Institue of Education is based very close to UCL and we are awaiting confirmation that they will be able to participate. The idea is that the teachers who teach teachers should be given the opportunity to learn from the children. The UK government's Department for Education and Skills is being notified that they may wish to send a representative.


1: Hacking Days[edit]

  • For Mediawiki developers and administrators, and coders working on related projects, to make presentations to each other about where they are at and what they need help with. If further hacking days are required then it could overlap on the two following days without difficulty.

2: Developers’ Meetings[edit]

These meetings are internal and by advance invitation only
  • For Mediawiki developers to meet with each other and agree the foreseeable future of Mediawiki, based on Hacking Days' presentations
  • For other developers to collaboratively code solutions to identified problems that are not expected to be solved by modifying the Mediawiki core (e.g. to create bots to tidy up known Wikipedia problems, or to write user manuals to guide users past common errors)

3: Social Days[edit]

  • For Wikimania presenters other than Mediawiki developers to make presentations to each other about their proposed conference presentations, and
  • To discuss and promote ways in which the academic community can further the aims of the Wikimedia Foundation
  • To permit conference attendees to visit places of interest related to Wikimedia projects as groups

4: Conference[edit]

  • For all attendees to attend seminars, plenary sessions, lunches and social events
  • To enable the Board of Trustees to give press interviews and a conference address
  • For the press to learn and broadcast about the Wikimedia Foundation
  • To enable sponsors to gain publicity
  • To permit the merchandising team to make sales and raise funds for WMF and WMUK activities
  • To enable the speakers to disseminate information of importance to the Wikimedia community

5: Set-up[edit]

Set-up and tear-down days apply to organisers, volunteers and venue staff only for setting up, and removing, tables, chairs, banners, A/V and other equipment, signage, etc.

Conference venue[edit]

A central London (zone 1) university with all conference facilities on a single campus, WiFi internet and disabled access.

University College London ("UCL") is the oldest and largest college of the University of London. Founded in 1826, UCL was the first university to be established in England after Oxford and Cambridge; the first to admit students of any race, class or religion; and the first to welcome women on equal terms with men. More recently, Larry Lessig launched the Creative Commons UK licenses at UCL; and UCL hosted the 8th International Society for Knowledge Organization Conference and the Econometric Society World Conference.

The main UCL campus occupies one block in the Bloomsbury area of London. All seminar rooms, dining halls, lecture theatres, meeting rooms and lounges recommended below for Wikimania use are contained within this main campus, and are within five minutes' walk of each other. Sufficient dormitory and hotel accommodation is available within a few minutes’ walk of the main campus. All on-campus facilities have disabled access except the one stated.

Room hire costs for UCL will be covered by University College.

Technical facilities[edit]

  • FREE Internet access for conference attendees with WiFi coverage of almost the whole campus via RoamNet and ethernet ports in each Halls of Residence bedroom.
  • Full details of the IT provision available to conferences at UCL is available here. The organisers will liaise with the UCL Education and Information Support division in advance to arrange logins for attendees.
  • In addition to these standard services, we will have the use of computer, photocopying and printing facilites via the Department of Computer Science.
  • Streaming services and other allied services for online attendance at Wikimania will be provided.
  • Bulk printing facilities are available in advance through UCL's printing partner or at short notice via The London Student Print Centre or Kinko's, both of which are around 1 minute's walk from UCL.
  • UCL has a professional quality video edit suite (details) along with a Multimedia Unitwhich includes facilities to produce CD-ROMs, DVDs, and output to web via streaming servers.

Venue facilities[edit]

Main conference hall[edit]

The UCL Bloomsbury Theatre will be the main hall. In addition to direct road access it is accessible through the central areas of the college. WiFi internet access has been arranged. It has a seated capacity of 535. Summary of technical information 360° view

Seminar rooms[edit]

88 - 270 seated capacity each, each including data projector, microphones, audio mixer, amplified loudspeakers, fixed auditorium seating and laptop power points.

Gustave Tuck
Gustave Tuck

Depending on the conference format chosen the following spaces will be available:

  • Darwin Lecture Theatre. 270 capacity.
  • J Z Young Lecture Theatre. 186 capacity.
  • Gustave Tuck Lecture Theatre. 147 capacity. 360° view
  • Gavin de Beer Lecture Theatre. 90 capacity.
  • Biochemistry Lecture Theatre. 88 capacity.

Additionally, for the school childrens' Wikiday one of the following lecture theatres would be chosen, depending upon attendance requirements and precise teleconferencing specifications:

  • Harrie Massey Lecture Theatre. 150 capacity.
  • Cruciform Lecture Theatre 2. 112 capacity.
  • Garwood Lecture Theatre. 48 capacity.

Lounge, meeting and dining facilities[edit]

All attendee facilities are within the same area of the campus, each including wireless internet access and moveable tables and chairs

  • Dining facilities:
  • North Cloisters - to be set with tables and chairs (similar to the way Ropes-Gray at Harvard was), and used as both lounge and dining hall. 310 capacity.
  • South Cloisters - adjacent to North Cloisters, to be used in the same manner. 240 capacity.
  • Jeremy Bentham Room. An overflow space near the Cloisters. 160 capacity. (This last area is the only area not wheelchair accessible at the time of writing, but that status may change prior to the conference)
  • Dining arrangements:
  • Breakfast and lunch will be provided onsite in order that all attendees can have as much time together as possible to interact, review ideas and discuss the conference.
  • Arrangements for evening meals are at the choice of attendees. The organisers will make available information about local restaurants, supermarkets and takeaways at all budgets, and will also make arrangements for groups to eat whilst continuing discussions.
  • Central registration and information point, with space for stalls
  • Octagon. Essentially a wide corridor area at the epicentre of our 'zone' on the UCL campus, every attendee will pass through here each day. In addition to the registration desk and a t-shirt stall there is also room for maybe 10-15 people to staff stalls along the sides.
  • Front Quad. Great open space with lawns for people to hang out on. Adjacent to Cloisters. No fixed capacity.

Support facilities[edit]

  • Press lounge and separate Press conference and interview rooms all adjacent to main conference hall
  • Press lounge: UCL Union Bloomsbury Theatre CSC Meeting Room. Comfortable lounge above main conference hall, with moveable tables, chairs and easy-chairs. No WiFi as standard, but can be supplied. Much larger than its nominal 20 capacity suggests, and comfortable for 50.
  • Press conference room: UCL Union Bloomsbury Theatre Conference Room. Professional-looking room above the main conference hall. Perfect for press conferences of up to 50 attendees. Freeform seating; can be arranged in rows. No WiFi as standard, but can be supplied. 50 capacity.
  • Interview rooms:
  • UCL Union Bloomsbury Theatre Meeting Room 204. Small, corporate-type room with conference table, above the main conference hall. Good soundproofing. No WiFi as standard, but can be supplied. 15 capacity.
  • UCL Union Bloomsbury Theatre Meeting Room 105. Similar to Room 204 above. 15 capacity.
  • VIP/Sponsors lounge
  • Haldane Room. Large, classical room with comfortable armchairs and views of the Front Quad. Adjacent to North Cloisters. 55 capacity.
  • Speakers lounge
  • Old Refectory. Elegant room with beautiful wooden panelling, can adjacent to the Cloisters. 110 capacity.
  • Organisers room
  • Wilkins Garden Room. Around corner from South Cloisters. Secluded, but with immediate access to all relevant areas of UCL. Calming view over Wilkins Garden. Enough space for a conference table, boxes of Wikimania 2007 t-shirts, and a host of tired but happy Wikimania organisers! Much larger than its nominal capacity suggests. 20 capacity.
  • Storage rooms
Additional non-public rooms for volunteer & Foundation use
  • JBR Meeting Room. Not wheelchair accessible, but close to Octagon so perfect for storing boxes of registration passes, t-shirts, etc. 16 capacity.
  • UCL Union Bloomsbury Theatre 1st Floor Rehearsal Room. Linked by elevator to Bloomsbury Theatre, so perfect for storing backup A/V or similar essentials. No WiFi as standard, but can be supplied. 50 capacity.
  • Bloomsbury Theatre dressing rooms. If required there are four rooms available here. No WiFi as standard, but can be supplied.


We anticipate attendees at Wikimania 2007 will choose to stay in a range of accommodation types and can offer individual rooms in student halls, plus hostels and hotels in all classes within five minutes’ walk of the venue. Some, of course, may choose to stay with friends or family, or even go couchsurfing! London welcomes many millions of tourists each year and there are hundreds of suitable hotels of all sizes and price ranges. We have only detailed some of those in the immediate area.

All accommodation in halls listed here is wheelchair accessible and has internet access available.

Student Halls[edit]

There is room for at least 350 Wikimanians to stay in student halls of residence within 5 minutes' walk of UCL. Should more than 350 wish to stay in nearby halls this could be accommodated. All rooms have internet access, and bed linen is provided. Roughly 6% of the available accommodation is in double rooms, so couples could be accommodated comfortably.

We are currently negotiating with four halls of residence:

Passfield Hall is one block from the Bloomsbury Theatre where the plenary sessions and main stream seminars will be held. Carr-Saunders Hall is in Fitzrovia close to the restaurants of Charlotte Street, and five minutes from UCL's main campus. It is likely that Passfield Hall and Carr-Saunders Hall would together be able to meet all our needs for halls of residence accommodation and they have the additional advantage that they may be able to take a reservation for us without a deposit, on the understanding that if London wins the bid only then would a deposit be required. Also, Passfield and Carr-Saunders have more or less identical specifications, which would simplify the booking process. However, between Commonwealth Hall and Schafer House there would be an additional 250 beds available during the conference, so extra capacity exists if required.

In addition to student halls of residence booked centrally through the Wikimania team, there are several youth hostels and budget hotels within 10 minutes' walk of UCL. Attendees who prefer to make their own arrangements but who are nevertheless on a tight budget may be interested in these. They include:


Budget hotels[edit]


All hotels listed below are within 10 minutes' walk of UCL, and many of them are known to offer discounts to UCL conference delegates if asked to do so at the time of booking. We will liaise with each hotel in advance to ensure that Wikimania attendees receive the best rate available.

  • 2-star hotels
  • 3-star hotels
  • 4-star hotels
  • 5-star hotels



There are five international airports serving London. Transfers are given to UCL with approximate journey times and one way fares.

  • Thameslink train to Farringdon station and then Circle, Metropolitan or Hammersmith & City Line to Euston Square station. 1 hr, £11.50 ($21)
  • Gatwick Express train to Victoria station and then Victoria Line to Warren Street station. 45 mins, £15.50 ($29)
  • Southern Railway to Victoria station, Victoria Line to Warren Street station. 1 hr, £10.50 ($19.50)
  • National Express coach to Victoria Coach Station, Victoria Line to Warren Street station. 2 hrs, £7.50 ($14)
  • London Luton Airport (IATA: LTN) is some 48km (30 miles) north of London and is also a major hub for low-cost and charter airlines . The nearby railway station is served by a free shuttle bus.
  • Shuttle bus to Luton Airport Parkway station, then Midland Mainline express train to St Pancras railway station then one stop on the Circle, Metropolitan or Hammersmith & City Line to Euston Square. 45 mins, £12.60 ($23.50)
  • Shuttle bus to Luton Airport Parkway station, then Thameslink train to Kings Cross Thameslink station then one stop on the Circle, Metropolitan or Hammersmith & City Line to Euston Square. 55 mins, £12.60 ($23.50)
  • easyBus to Baker Street station and then Circle, Metropolitan or Hammersmith & City Line to Euston Square. 1 hr 10 mins, £3.50 ($6.50)
  • Terravision coach to Baker Street station and then Circle, Metropolitan or Hammersmith & City Line to Euston Square. 1 hr 10 mins, £11.50 ($21)
  • National Express coach to Victoria Coach Station and then Victoria Line to Warren Street. 1 hr 30 mins, £12 ($22.50)

For a limited coverage of detailed flight options, indiciating comparative costs between candidate cities, please refer to the subpage at fares.

International Rail[edit]

International Coaches[edit]

Direct Eurolines coaches to central London are available from the following major European cities, typically at lower prices than offered by any other means of public transport:

Eurolines double-decker coach
Eurolines double-decker coach
Amsterdam Barcelona Berlin Bruxelles/Brussel
Bucureşti Budapest Köln København
Dublin Edinburgh Firenze Frankfurt am Main
Genève Göteborg Hamburg Kraków
Lille Lyon Madrid Marseille
Milano/Milan Montpellier München Oslo
Paris Perpignan Praha Rīga
Roma Salzburg Strasbourg/Straßburg Tallinn
Toulouse Wien Warszawa Zürich

A timetable showing direct connections between major cities is available here. For detailed schedules and connecting routes from hundreds of smaller cities, towns and villages across Europe, go here.

National Rail[edit]

The venue is close to three main line railway stations which reach eight of the nine regions of England; all other main line stations are less than 30 minutes away by public transport. The three mainline rail stations - each of which has an integrated tube and bus station - are:

Local transport[edit]

Within 5 minutes walk of four zone 1 London Underground (cs, da, de, es, fr, gl, hr, id, it, he, nl, ja, no, pl, pt, ro, ru, sk, sr, fi, sv, th, zh) stations served by five different lines. The underground runs between approximarely 5:30am and 12:30 am daily.

Nine daytime and ten night time public bus routes, all wheelchair-accessible, stop close by.

Underground stations within five minutes' walk:

Additionally, Russell Square station on the Piccadilly Line is about 12-15 minutes' walk away.

Information about ticketing within London is available on Wikipedia and from Transport for London. Attendees are recommended to use an Oyster card - a contactless smartcard - which can then be used for travel on bus, underground, DLR and tram services at prices approximately half those of cash fares. This can be purchased online internationally via the link on this page (or online from the uk here) to save time. Alternatively, they can be purchased on arrival in London. Note that we currently hope to provide attendees with a free Oyster card for the week of the conference.


It is not recommended that attendees travel by car due to the high cost and low availability of parking in the vicinity of the conference, and the venue being within the London congestion charge zone, however prospective attendees - especially disabled drivers in adapted vehicles - should contact the organisers for detailed further information.

  • UCL is at the boundary of the London congestion charge zone and it is sometimes possible to park close to UCL without entering the charging zone by using the car park at Euston Station. The charge per day is currently £22 ($41), and other secure car parks are available within 15 minutes' walk. A cheaper alternative would be to park at the outskirts of London and take public transport to UCL and we will offer advice on the options available to those who need to drive.


Flight costs[edit]

Estimates of standard class return flight costs by main carrier (assumed rate of GBP1=USD1.86)

Asia £250-£600 ($460-$1100)
Australasia £550-£850 ($1000-$1600)
Europe £75-£250 ($140-$450) Low-cost carriers and trains also available
North America £250-£500 ($460-$950) Low-cost carriers operate from Canada
South America £400-£800 ($750-$1500)

Detailed fares available change rapidly and will depend on airline and date/time of travel chosen. Having five international airports (and international rail services) and actually flying to just about every country and international airport, we are not limited for flight options (days of week, times) in the way that anyone else is, especially given that there are even hourly services on many routes the actual choices available are endless.

Online flight availability and booking is available through sites such as Opodo - multi-lingual search and booking facility of flights from 500 airlines - along with travelocity, and many others.

For a limited coverage of detailed flight options, indiciating comparative costs between candidate cities, please refer to the subpage at fares.

'Low-cost' flights[edit]

From all of Europe and from some other countries, eg. Canada, 'low-cost' airline flights are available which will be cheaper than the main carrier prices indicated above (eg. Warsaw-Luton zł 237 / £42.36 / $79 easyJet return). Because London's airports are served by so many low-cost carriers and routes we haven't listed all the locations served but have provided links which display the full list.

For reference: Low-cost flights to Turin, to Alexandria El Nhouza, to Taipei Chiang Kai-shek

Costs for attendees[edit]

  • Our intial target 'maximum conference charge per community attendee' was £53 ($100), however initial feedback in our discussions with probable sponsors suggests that we should be able to cover all on-site non-personal costs of attendees, ie including
  • Accommodation (in hall)
  • Breakfast and lunch daily
  • Use of conference facilities, including WiFi or terminal-based internet access
  • Transport to (and from) party
  • Local travel during stay (Oystercard covering central zones)
  • Attendees not from the Wikimedia community will pay an appropriate scaled fee to cover costs.
  • We would hope to also cover attendee's travel cost from arrival airport/station to the Wikimania venue (however the issue here is how to get the ticket to the attendee in advance)


  • We would seek to raise additional funds from sponsors and during the event in order to benefit
  • The Wikimedia Foundation
  • The UK Chapter
  • Related charities
  • and to provide a number of travel bursaries to enable attendance by community members who would not otherwise be able to afford the travel costs to London

Whilst clearly we cannot put figures on these activities at the present time, we would hope that the total raised will be substantial.

Visa requirements[edit]

  • Those travelling from within the EU, North America, Japan, South Africa, Australasia or most of Latin America will not require a visa to visit the UK.
  • Many people from other regions will also be able to visit the UK without a visa. To determine whether you will need a visa to visit the UK, go to The nature of any visa required will depend on your nationality and your current country of residence. An easy-to-use form is available here.
  • It is believed that citizens of the following countries will normally require a visa, however you should confirm using the links above.
Afghanistan Albania Algeria Angola
Armenia Azerbaijan Bahrain Bangladesh
Belarus Benin Bhutan Bosnia-Herzegovina
Bulgaria Burkina Faso Burma (Myanmar) Burundi
Cambodia Cameroon Cape Verde Central African Republic
Chad China, People's Rep. of Colombia Comoros
Congo, Democratic Republic of Congo, Republic of Cuba Djibouti
Dominican Republic Ecuador Egypt Equatorial Guinea
Eritrea Ethiopia Fiji Gabon
Gambia Georgia Ghana Guinea
Guinea Bissau Guyana Haiti India
Indonesia Iran Iraq Ivory Coast
Jamaica Jordan Kazakhstan Kenya
Korea (Dem. People's Rep) Kuwait Kyrgyzstan Laos
Lebanon Liberia Libya Macedonia
Madagascar Malawi Mali Mauritania
Moldova Mongolia Morocco Mozambique
Nepal Niger Nigeria Oman
Pakistan Palestinian Authority Peru Philippines
Qatar Romania Russia Rwanda
Sao Tome & Principe Saudi Arabia Senegal Serbia & Montenegro
Sierra Leone Somalia Sri Lanka Sudan
Surinam Syria Taiwan Tajikistan
Tanzania Thailand Togo Tunisia
Turkey 'Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus' Turkmenistan Uganda
Ukraine United Arab Emirates Uzbekistan Vatican City*
Vietnam Yemen Zambia Zimbabwe
* (service & emergency passports only)
  • The Wikimedia UK chapter may be able to act as a sponsor if you need one in order to get a visa.

Local Team[edit]

The London team promise a conference of Wikimanians and organised by Wikimanians for Wikimanians with in-house control throughout.

The Bid Development team includes:

During the conference there are over 100 London-based regular editors of the WMF projects and many other UK-based editors who have also offered their support and will be part of the preparation and on-site teams.

The first ever Meetup of Jimbo with real Wikipedians took place in London, UK on 5 June 2004 (pictured above). Attendees included Angela, Arkady Rose, Arno Lagrange, Bodnobod, Camembert, Charles Matthews, Christine Wales, David Gerard, Enchanter, Ed g2s, Fuzheado, G-Man, James F., JPF, Kira Wales, Morwen, MykReeve, Nommonomanac, Oliver Pereira, theresa knott, Warofdreams plus many many others. More photographs and Jimbo's report are on en: here.

Chapter support[edit]

This bid is actively supported by Wiki Educational Resources Ltd, the UK Wikimedia Chapter.

Venue support[edit]

Support identified so far includes:

  • The UCL Provost has advised us that "This seems to me like an excellent idea and one that fits well with our general mission and approach to life" and that we "can count on strong institutional support." This has included the room hire costs (approx. value £30,000 / $56,250)
  • UCL Department of Computer Science has offered staff and student volunteers to help with IT support for the conference, together with additional IT, meeting room, and office resources during Wikimania.
  • UCL CS has also offered a designated Wikimania liaison staff member within their department.
  • UCL Department of German would be interested in participating in Wikimania and expect to be able to provide student volunteers as translators and assistants.
  • UCL Department of Dutch has recently begun to experiment with the use of wikis with students and would like to be involved.
  • UCL Faculty of Laws would like to be involved. Prof Philippe Sands QC is strongly supportive.
  • UCL Department of Phonetics and Linguistics has expressed interest in participating.

Sponsorship opportunities[edit]

Professor Anthony Finkelstein, Head of the UCL Department of Computer Science:

"I feel confident that Wikimania London can raise a significant body of sponsorship. I have some experience of raising such sponsorship in the UK. I will be approaching both the IET and BCS to provide staff support and facilities. I believe that Microsoft Research might support student scholarships and I also believe IBM can be approached to support Wikiday for schoolchildren. I have the contacts and if the bid is successful we would be in a good position to go ahead. London has many internet and media companies who will I am sure want to support the social events and food. I undertake to assist in the identification of sponsorship targets and to use UCL's range of contacts to take this forward."

T-Mobile (UK), which is headquartered close to London, has indicated that it will consider sponsoring Wikimania 2007 in London.

The CEO of Computer Aid International (the world's largest non-profit supplier of computers to developing countries), Tony Roberts, has offered to work with us to identify suitable partner schools and community centres in sub-Saharan Africa, Latin America and the South Asian sub-continent to enable our proposed tele-conferences and link ups with sites in developing countries.

OLPC is currently considering our proposals that they may be able to provide additional assistance in this regard and also in terms of funding. Initial response from our contact at OLPC has been very positive and an official response is pending.

We have approached local and national government departments for their assistance, and been advised that "we can expect City Hall (ie. London Mayor) and UK Government support in kind". This is likely to include support from venues such as The Science Museum and the Institute of Contemporary Arts, from the relevant tourist authorities, and also - through the London Development Agency - from local and major retail organisations.

The potential for local sponsorship is enormous. The UK headquarters of the British Broadcasting Corporation, British Telecom, Logica CMG, Yahoo! and the Wellcome Trust are all within a short walk of the UCL campus, and several hundred other internationally known institutions are either based in London or have local offices which will be approached for sponsorship.


There were an estimated 7,517,700 people living in the Greater London area in mid-2005, whilst the wider metropolitan area has a population of between 12 and 14 million. It has historically been known as one of the most ethnically diverse cities in the world, and this continues to the modern day with more than 300 languages spoken and 50 non-indigenous communities with a population of more than 10,000 living in London. The 2001 census showed that about 27% of London's population were born outside the UK, and about 29% were classified as non-white. Over 200 languages are spoken in London primary schools and on the streets; even though this is an English city every visitor will find their own language is spoken here.

Although historically dominated by Christianity, London is also home to sizeable Muslim, Hindu, Sikh and Jewish communities. The most important Muslim edifice is London Central Mosque on the edge of Regent's Park. Much of London's large Hindu community is found in the north-west of the city and contains one of Europe's largest Hindu temples, Neasden Temple. Sikh communities are located in East and West London, which is also home to one of the largest Sikh Temples in the world outside India. The majority of British Jews live in London, with significant Jewish communities in North London. There have been many arrivals from Asia in central and east London, resulting in over 57 Chinese, Japanese and Vietnamese Restaurants located in the seven streets that make up Chinatown in central London alone. There have been major Caribbean communities since the 1950s and more recently there has been an influx from eastern Europe and from all over Africa, the latter building on a Somali community here since 1914. London is a modern and vibrant city with a great history alongside the modern skyline. The Mayor is currently running a highly visible We are Londoners, We are One campaign celebrating the diversity and unity of the residents of this great city.

Although there are presently hundreds of London-based editors on Wikipedia and the other projects, most of their editing is currently on the english-language projects. We see the prime legacy of a London Wikimania in 2007 as the opportunity it presents for us to utilise the event and the media coverage to reach out and 'pull in' editors to all the languages we want to offer, growing the London and UK-based editing community across all our languages.

Prior to and during the event, we will seek to publicise the range of languages that editors can work in and work with local and regional press, radio and television to reach into schools, colleges and homes to promote both the concepts of Wikimedia and the benefits that being an editor on our projects brings to both the individual contributor and the world-wide user base. We have an indication from the Vice-Chair of the Mayor's Cultural Strategy Group for London that we will be able to work with them on a publicity and promotion programme, which might include ancilliary events organised by them under our direction. This will be managed by the UK Chapter on behalf of Wikimania.

We believe a London wikimania will be beneficial to every project in every language.


Information Pack[edit]

We will make available a website covering transportation, facilities, local events, restaurants, accommodation, disabled access, and information about London's tourist and cultural facilities, with maps and weblinks at least six months in advance of the start of the conference. A downloadable version would also be available in both printable (PDF) and mobile versions.


If requested in advance we would make available British Sign Language interpretation for the duration of the conference.

Exchange rates[edit]

The pound sterling is a major world trading currency and hence is obtainable worldwide, however this means that the daily business and tourist rates fluctuate. In additional to specialist bureaux most banks and post offices in the UK offer currency exchange facilities and many telephones and some shops will also accept euros and some other currencies directly. £1 = 100p

Latest rates (2006-09-14 from

£1 = 1 unit =
USA Dollar 1.8886 52.9493p
Euro 1.48288 67.4362p
Australian Dollar 2.50211 39.9663p
Brazilian Réal 4.06993 24.5704p
Canadian Dollar 2.1073 47.4541p
Chinese Yuan 15.0072 6.66347p
Danish Krone 11.0628 9.03926p
Hong Kong Dollar 14.6969 6.80416p
Indian Rupee 87.1022 1.14808p
Japanese Yen 221.854 0.450747p
Malaysian Ringgit 6.93494 14.4197p
Mexican Peso 20.7455 4.82032p
£1 = 1 unit =
New Zealand Dollar 2.85762 34.9942p
Norwegian Kroner 12.3159 8.11956p
Singapore Dollar 2.98059 33.5504p
South African Rand 13.9615 7.16257p
South Korean Won 1808.14 0.0553053p
Sri Lanka Rupee 193.506 0.51678p
Swedish Krona 13.6753 7.31243p
Swiss Franc 2.36056 42.3628p
Taiwan Dollar 62.1538 1.60891p
Thai Baht 70.4447 1.41955p
Venezuelan Bolivar 4050.29 0.0246896p

Medical facilities[edit]

The brand new (2005) building for University College Hospital is opposite the UCL conference site and includes a 24-hour Accident and Emergency facility. The NHS provides free care at the point of need in such cases.

Local taxes[edit]

The UK operates Value Added Tax at various rates. Food. books, magazines and many other items are zero-rated and have no tax charged on them.

Prices displayed in shops are the prices paid; there are no added-at-the-till sales taxes as apply in many countries.


All prices quoted in this bid document, and the fares subpage, include all applicable taxes and are the prices that will apply on the dates of Wikimania so far as we are able to obtain them.



1. Perceived threat from terrorism

The media around the world have reported on terrorist acts in the UK and London as they have in America, the Middle East and Indonesia. As can be seen by our own coverage on Wikipedia and Wikinews this coverage is often overplayed in the media's search for ratings. The UK have an unarmed police service and, along with security services, continue to keep the city and country safe with London having a very low crime rate generally. Whilst some international media has reported 'big problems', this city of 9 million people has proceeded with 'business as usual', as London residents will tell you.

2. Perception of London as an expensive city

London is a world city and attracts visitors from all over the world and, yes, some of those visitors choose to spend large amounts of money in expensive hotels and restaurants. But just as the resident population live well without finding it inordinately expensive so do most other visitors. Tourism brings many people to London every year and if we were 'too expensive' they wouldn't come. Part of our bid is that we are providing the majority of facilities during Wikimania for an all-inclusive cost (which we anticipate to be zero!) but attendees are also welcome to visit our free museums, eat out and discover London for themselves, whatever their budget. Our Information Pack will include information on how to travel, eat and have fun in London at minimal cost.

3. Ability to bid for Wikimania

UK Universities, generally, will only permit bookings up to twelve months' ahead. This means that, as universities will usually be the most suitable locations for holding a Wikimania conference - due to facilities, accomodation, etc being required in a convenient location during the summer at an acceptable cost - then bidding for Wikimania 2008, or any other conference where bidding takes place more than 12 months in advance, is unlikely to be possible. Therefore we are bidding to be the designated host city for Wikimania 2007.


1. Openness to all

London is a city where all nationalities, religions, and sexualities are welcome to visit without threat or worry about the possibility of 'issues' with the local population, police or security services. London is the most cosmopolitan city in the world with every nationality, culture and language represented in our schools and everyday lives, (and which also gives us the widest range of cuisine at all prices!) Similarly lesbian, gay, bisexual and trans people will find a safe and public welcome here without any risks from their public or private actions, just as there are facilities for all creeds. This is a country that welcomes and supports free speech and free expression.

2. Ease of access

London is the crossroads of the world. Heathrow is the busiest international airport in the world and with five international airports - each with integrated onward fast train or tube services to the Wikimania venue - and an international highspeed railway service from Europe we are probably the easiest place for people to get to no matter where they start. And that multiplicity of travel routes usually means cheaper prices from the competition, indeed our checking of flight prices has shown we are the cheapest destination from just about everywhere.

3. Opportunities to learn, explore, meet and enjoy

Coming to Wikimania is not just about sharing our thoughts and ideas about Wikimedia, Wikinews, Wikisource, Wiktionary and the other projects in every language, but also to meet other editors socially and to have a brief visit to a new place at the same time. Wikimania London 2007 will not only provide facilities 'on campus' throughout the conference for these to happen but will also encourage visitors to take in the sights, the history and culture of London and the nightlife. For those who want to stay longer our downloadable information pack will include contacts and options to extend their visit.


The map on the left gives the area around the venue for about 500 yards (450m) and indicates the main UCL buildings with the main conference hall highlighted. The plan on the right shows these buildings in more detail and includes some of the halls and facilities we will be using marked in yellow. Some of those shown are organisational or will only be used for part of the overall converence. The centre left map shows the main UCL campus, nearby points of interest including the British Museum, and all of the halls of residence mentioned elsewhere in the bid document. The lower map shows details of the main UCL campus and includes Passfield Hall; Carr-Saunders and Schafer are just off the map.

External links[edit]