|Pam Peacock at work|
Perhaps ironically, the world wide web has become a portal for the most local of online sites.
In Berkshire alone there are community websites for Tilehurst, Caversham, Newbury, Wargrave, Twyford and a whole host of others.
For website links, visit BBC Berkshire's community index:
Now mum-of-two Pamela Peacock has launched a local site for Maidenhead, newly set up since January 2007, where you can find events in Maidenhead, Cookham, Bisham and Bray. Also included is a Family Zone for kids, local stories, film and music download suggestions and cinema listings.
|"We've always wanted to run our own business from home allowing me, as a mum, to take more control of our lives."|
|AboutMyArea/SL6's Pam Peacock|
"We also aim to promote local businesses in our business directory so that they gain local customers," explains Pam, 34, who bought the franchise from parent company AboutMyArea, one of the fastest growing online businesses.
"We're also promoting charity events, and have a sports section, health suggestions and recipes."
|Visit Pam's Maidenhead community site here:
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Pam, who also works part-time as an HR specialist, soon discovered that having your finger on the pulse of a town is no walk in the park.
"You could spend the whole day updating the community element of the site, changing links, contacting local clubs, agreeing on links to each others sites, adding photos, writing reviews, reading the AboutMyArea suggestions on improving site traffic" reels off Pam, who on top of that has to earn revenue from selling advertising space to local businesses.
Pam struck on the idea of running her own site when she searched for Maidenhead-specific events on the Internet.
"Because as a family ourselves, we were looking for an up-to-date local online site with information on what was happening in Maidenhead at the weekend for families and children and we couldn't find anything, so we looked into setting up our own online community website."
And running your own website also means there's no need to trek to an office.
"We've always wanted to run our own business from home allowing me, as a mum, to take more control of our lives and to have the flexibility to be available for our children when they leave nursery and start school next year."
Now Pam, who has no past online experience, finds herself at the core of Maidenhead life.
"It feels great, but we've got someway to go before we can say we're at the centre of the community, but that's our aim, already we know so much more about what's going on in Maidenhead, more about what's going on and getting to meet new people so as parents with children (who don't get out too much) it's a great way of meeting new people."
If you'd like to be featured on AboutMyArea/SL6 or get involved with the website: