Talking newspaper set to launch new equipment appeal

boombox  and memory stick
boombox and memory stick
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The Wisbech & District Talking Newspaper held it’s AGM on 23 October in the Reed Barn at Peckover House.

The group’s secretary, Isobel Shippey, said: “We have had a very busy and successful year. Having stalls at many local events which helped us recruit new narrators and listeners, but we could always do with more. We were sorry to say ‘goodbye’ to one of our sound recording engineers,

“Sam Rix, who is moving out of the area, so we are looking for more people to help with the actual technical recording of the newspapers.”

There were two pieces of big news announced at the AGM. Firstly that the group now has its own website – – where people can visit and get all the group’s latest news and contact it. Secondly, that the Committee has been discussing moving forward with the technology it uses.

Miss Shippey said: “We currently produce our talking newspapers on CD and cassette, but it is becoming increasing difficult to source analogue equipment, so we have been discussing the need to move on as technology is moving so quickly. We plan produce our newspapers on memory stick and provide playback equipment for all our listeners. The piece of equipment we are currently investigating is called a BoomBox, and it has been specially designed for partially sighted and blind people. It is well designed with large clear buttons and is very simple to use, it also has an FM radio built into it and the sound quality is superb.”

Miss Shippey went on: “Wisbech & District Talking Newspaper has historically provided playback equipment for its listeners, and we plan to continue to do so. To provide memory sticks and a BoomBox for all our listeners is going to cost the charity over £2000, so we plan to launch a specific fundraising campaign for this project, so we can continue to provide local news to the blind and partially-sighted of Wisbech & surrounding area.”

The Wisbech & District Talking Newspaper has been providing local news for the blind and partially sighted of Wisbech since it was founded in 1978 by Mr Ted Rigg. It is run by a group of volunteers whose object is to enable the blind and partially sighted enjoy some local news items & magazine articles they would normally not be able to access. It produces three recordings per month (which listeners can receive on either tape or CD), comprising two 1-hour issues of local news and one 1-hour magazine of varied interest. The tapes & CDs are sent out, and returned, free of charge, using the Post Office’s Articles for the Blind postage.

As a registered Charity the Wisbech & District Talking Newspaper relies entirely on donations, bequests, grants and fundraising events. Monies received are used only for purchasing equipment, cassettes, CDs and pouches as required. The group needs donations to enable it to continue, improve & expand its services to those who are unable to read the printed word, all donations, small or large, are very much appreciated.

To get in touch with the group either visit its website at: and press the ‘contact us’ button, or email: