I wanted to prove that if there is a wide variety of services the sphere of influence will be greater and people would travel further to avail of these services.
In order to try and prove this I had to carry out a count of all of the services offered by the town, I also had to try and get a number of people to complete a questionnaire so as I could try and establish how far the people were willing to come to avail of the services the settlement has to offer.
In order to collect the data I firstly had to design a way of counting all the services along with the class, we agreed that the best way to this was to make a list of all the possible services that a settlement could over then we would tally them all up. Then we were split up into groups so that we would get the whole town covered within the time that we had, and began to start counting up all of the services. Whilst we were counting all of the services we took time to try and get people to complete surveys along the way and many people filled them out.
Counting all the services involved all the groups covering different areas of the town and then at the end we had to put all the information together. The questionnaire was carried out by random members of the public who were in one of our chosen settlements and were willing to take the time to carry out the survey. We collected our data in a range of different town including: Enniskillen, Lisnaskea, Brooke borough, Maguire bridge, Newtownbutler, Fivemiletown, Clones, Smith borough and Monaghan
The questionnaires were designed by the class together, the purpose of the questionnaires is to try an establish how far the customer is willing to come and what service they are coming to avail off. In order for us to try and prove that Christallers theory is true we need to be able to know how far the average person is willing to come to avail of the services offered by the settlement. That is why we have designed a questionnaire to try and find this information out along with other useful information so we can broaden are findings even more.
In order for our data to be correlated quickly we firstly had to be split up into different groups in order to try and record the data quick when we arrived at the settlement. Then we had to establish which groups were going to cover each part of the settlement, and design a route so that each group would end up covering as much as possible so that we would get every service in the settlement counted. But then we were faced with another problem where does each group start and where do they finish? We had to try and make sure that any service was not counted twice as we wanted our results to be as accurate as they could possibly be.
So we had to design a start and a finish point for each group so that we could get the most accurate results. We were also on a very tight schedule and had to make are route and recording methods as time efficient as possible, so we used a tally to record the results on our “record sheet” (see appendix) which had all the services already listed out. So the actual recording of the services took very little time.
Once we had all the settlements covered we returned back with all our results. But the question that then faced us was how do we put all this information together? Well we were split into groups and given a settlement for instance I was in a group and we were given Enniskillen. So a member of the group went around and the class and got all the record sheets that were recorded in Enniskillen then they were divided out among our group and each service was read out one by one from A-Z, and all the tallies were recorded on one large record sheet for Enniskillen by another member of the group. This process was carried out for each of the settlements and the final record sheets with all the information were made. Then we had to try and correlate the information that was contained within the questionnaires. We had to get averages and recorded all this information on a separate sheet so it could be all very clear.