21 years of the talking newspaper

A talking newspaper is this year celebrating its 21st year in operation.

The Blyth and District Talking Newspaper has spent the last 21 years providing local news and information on audio tapes and memory sticks to blind and visually impaired residents in south east Northumberland.

The service, which is run by volunteers, is provided free of charge to its listeners.

The newspaper was first established in 1994 with a small group of readers recording onto tapes in Dent Street in Blyth.

The group ceased operations in the late 90s due to a lack of readers and the need to find alternative premises to make the recordings, but was re-established in 2001 by the late Avril Bell and and Alice Gibson, after a chance meeting at the Well Women’s Club in Blyth.

Secretary Valerie Lockhart, publishes the reader’s rota in a newsletter which is distributed monthly to all readers to keep them informed of what is happening at the talking newspaper.

A celebration evening was held at the Seahorse on Plessey Road in Blyth.

Anyone interested in become a volunteer reader can call Val on (01670) 367293, or anyone interested in the technical side of recording, or knows someone who would like to receive the talking newspaper can call Eric on (01670) 355197.