Fed up residents of Goole create their own search engine after constant prompts from Google asking ‘did you mean: Google’ when they search Yorkshire town

Residents of a town called Goole have launched an internet search engine after getting fed up with always being asked ‘Did you mean: Google?’ whenever they searched their home town.

Goole isn't Google website

Goole isn’t Google website

More than 19,000 people live in the East Yorkshire settlement which straddles the beginning of the Humber estuary about 30 miles west of Hull.

Famous facts about Goole include it is home to a huge inland container port despite being 45 miles from the North Sea and it’s well known locally for some iconic twin water towers

The name ‘Goole’ is derived from Middle English meaning ‘stream’ or ‘channel’ and it was mentioned as far back as 1362 as Gulle.

But now the 20th century behemoth that is Google is causing a row in the sleepy town which has forced some residents to take drastic action.

Volunteers at the Goole Museum were so frustration they have launched ‘Goole isn’t Google!’ where residents can search everything Goole.

Museum volunteer Chris Collins helped with others to create the site http://gooleisnotgoogle.weebly.com/

She said: “Basically, the idea arose from a general frustration when trying to find Goole links on the internet.

Goole Museum Volunteers Chris Collins, Paul Lewis, Janet Nicholson and George Balcom

Goole Museum Volunteers Chris Collins, Paul Lewis, Janet Nicholson and George Balcom

“All we’re trying to say is that Goole isn’t a search engine … it’s a fascinating little town.

And, at the end of the day…we were here first. Goole has been around since 1826 – Google was only founded in 1998.

“As volunteers at Goole Museum, we naturally carry out a lot of local research – about the history of Goole and the surrounding area and about the people who lived and worked in Goole in the past.

“We have a couple of local history websites which we run The Goole Experience and The Captains’ Table and we very often try to find out information for these sites online.

“You can imagine, therefore, how frustrating it is to put in a search containing the word ‘Goole’, only to be confronted by the question ‘Did you mean: Google?’, followed by pages of Google results … with not a Goole link in sight.

“We’re not the only ones to find this problematic – only last week a gentleman went up to the desk in the local library, which is on the floor beneath our museum), asking how on earth he could find anything about Goole on the net when only Google links come up in the search engine.

“It must be said that Google provides an excellent service – we use many of its facilities.

Goole signposts

Goole signposts

“However, unfortunately, the name of our little town is just so similar to that of the giant company that, in Google terms, we just don’t seem to exist.

“So we decided to try, in a very small way, to do something about it.  I came up with the idea of creating a website containing a totally Goole-focussed search engine – and we just couldn’t resist the title of ‘Goole isn’t Google!’

“It’s a response which may often be heard emanating from people trying to carry out internet searches in the Goole area.”

Chris said she actually used Google’s own Customised Search facility to create a site with she is filling with Goole links.

She said: “I have so far populated it with over 200 links to Goole – or Goole-related – websites.

“However, I am always on the look-out for more local sites and would be pleased to hear from anyone who would like their site added.

“At the moment, in addition to our volunteers’ websites, I have included local businesses and services – shops, doctors, dentists, garages, pubs, clubs, youth organisations, sports centres, entertainment venues, local councils, local hospital, library, local history websites.

Chris Collins

Chris Collins

“We launched the site a couple of weeks ago and have advertised it via our Volunteers’ Facebook page and Twitter account, a poster in the local library and The site has so far been visited by around 220 people and responses have been very positive.

“If Google ever do become aware of our site, I hope that they will take it in the spirit in which it is intended.”