Andover’s Talking newspaper is a real hidden gem of a service to local blind and partially-sighted people.
Talking newspapers provide those who cannot see the printed word, which can be taken for granted by those who have clear vision, something to listen to. Andover’s talking newspaper is recorded using the local paper, The Andover Advertiser as well as using information from The Lights Theatre, and information from local clubs and magazines. A group of volunteer editors and readers descend on the Talking Newspaper studio once a week and work together to record the news from that week’s paper.
More volunteers come along to record the master version onto some 70-80 memory sticks which are then distributed via Royal Mail to the local listeners who can play the week’s paper via a listening box, supplied by Andover’s Talking Newspaper.
Blind and partially-sighted people don’t have this opportunity, but we can help them in other ways. We can provide access, if we apply more thought and effort. We have the technology … let’s use it.
Andover’s Talking Newspaper covers everywhere within an eight-mile radius of Andover, and will also send further afield for listeners who have moved out of the area, but want to stay in touch with what is going on in Andover.
Volunteers are always needed to keep this valuable service going. If you would like to give a couple of hours a week to help, or know someone, please contact Renie Scott on 01264 353998.
The Mayor of Test Valley, Cllr Jan Lovell, laid on a beautiful afternoon tea for the Volunteers in the Guildhall. She said, “It is my great pleasure to host this tea for you all. Thank you all so much for everything you do for the local blind and partially-sighted people in the area.
“I have a great association with the Talking Newspaper after my late husband was involved, and I know that you all don’t often get to socialise with each other, so I hope that this helps bring you together today.”
Chairman of Andover’s Talking Newspaper Michael Shellard CBE spoke and said, “Thank you so much Madame Mayor for inviting us here today. We are very much looking forward to eating all of your cake.”