This April we have once again been blogging along with the A-Z Blogging Challenge. Our team of one-place studiers have shared some of the treasures to be found for a one-place study, particularly around the theme of Visualisation, our Shared Endeavour for 2016. View them all! And now, our final entry...

Well, it is time to talk about the last letter of the alphabet for this year – those of a less-charitable mind may think that the blogging team had already started celebrating when we thought of the subject for this last letter! However there is method behind this choice. As humans we thrive on novelty and we love trivia, so I would like you to think about what you can say about your place that makes it unusual or different? What is there beyond the facts and figures that makes one go "Really?", "Well I didn’t know that!" or "I want to know more".

I am currently reading a book entitled "Behind the scenes at the Museum of Baked Beans – My Search for Britain’s Maddest Museums" (Hunter Davies, 2010) and along with the museum of the title, there are also museums mentioned devoted to ladies' fans, lawnmowers, salt, sheep, money, packaging and about a dozen others. Bill Bryson in his book "The Lost Continent: Travels in Small-Town America" (1999) visits one small town, where the single mile-long main street boasts "the Elvis Presley Hall of Fame, a Wax museum, two haunted houses, the National Bible Museum, Hillbilly Village, Ripley's Believe or Not, a Space Needle, something called Paradise Island, World of Illusions, a Country Music Show, Police Museum" and the list goes on! - I doubt very much whether the places that most of us study have anything like these and wouldn’t it be great if they did?

However, there are a great number of books that list the quirky and unusual things in our towns and villages. Some are walking guides, some tours of the area by car and some are just places of interest – have you checked to see if your place has that odd USP that would fit the bill?

So tell us the odd, notable or strange thing about your place. Tell us what would make you stop and think. You may not hit the zany, but the unusual, quirky, interesting and intriguing is out there...

Steve Pickthall

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