AndyA - 2:53 pm on May 1, 2012 (gmt 0)
Checked a few key phrases and have found the same as others. Low quality sites ranking high in the SERPs. These sites are generally updated rarely, and offer little in the way of content.
For one phrase, I found a competing site listed on page one, while mine is on page five. I have hundreds of pages of original content, and provide details the other site has never provided. It's been online since about 1902 (it's an old site!) and has a lot of long-established links pointing to it, but offers little to users other than a few dated images and a Yahoo Groups mailing list for people to join. The list is great, but private, so I'm not sure how much weight that carries in indexing.
Going to take a hard look at my site and see if I can improve things. I've never purchased any links, and only exchanged a very few links on a links page with other quality, on topic sites about ten years ago. I rarely add new links to that page, but I do check periodically to make sure the links are still good and the sites haven't changed for the worse. I haven't had any messages in GWT, so not sure what's holding my site back at this point.