Work with WordPress MU (multi user) is the reason from my recent absence from blogging. The East Coast area of a UK charity, the National Coastwatch Institution, needed a rebuild of one its website to go along with an extension of it’s activities.

Although you may not have the same needs as this organization you may consider using WordPress MU if you want to develop more than one blog.

I had originally created the coastwatch site using the Joomla CMS system but, as the interface was complicated for them, WordPress was my obvious choice. After working with WordPress on various sites for a year or so, I know how flexible it can be. I was pleased to see that immediately after the new site was up and running Keef, who will be a co-author, had written a post and just needed me to tell him to hit the media button to add images. So much simpler.

wpmu-skegness wpmu-mablethorpe

As NCI East Coast now comprises of two coastwatch stations, managed by two separate committes, each needed their own unique identity, I decided on using WordPress MU to make administration simpler. Both stations now have their own unique pages and blogs on their own virtual subdomains.

The blog and some pages on the main East Coast site are being used as a private member only area for both of the coastwatch volunteer teams. Plugins turn this section into a true community site.

The other East Coast pages are public and contain information common to both stations. By using WordPress MU, the three blogs and three sets of static pages (NCI Eastcoast, NCI Skegness and NCI Mablethorpe) can all be managed from one admin dashboard.

I am hoping to see lots of posts written on the site to gain it speedy search engine page ranking and to raise awareness, more volunteer watchers and, hopefully more funds, for this worthy charity organization. Their volunteers man the coastwatch stations daily, making sure beach and sea goers are safe.

You may like to go along and leave a comment, joining me in congratulating them on their hard work and efforts in getting their second station up and running.

I will expand upon the advantages of and uses for MU in an upcoming post. For those of you interested in setting up an MU site I will also be talking of how to I set the East Coast site up, the plugins I used and where to find futher information.

I will also be discussing how you can use WordPress, including an existing installation, or WordPress MU to create a community site. As with the NCI Eastcoast example, you do not have to run your whole site as a community site – you can just have it as an add-on to a normal WP site.