Conference for Talking News groups

Dereck Double, president of Chichester Rotary Club, presents a cheque to Dave McVittie, chairman of Chichester Area Talking News
Dereck Double, president of Chichester Rotary Club, presents a cheque to Dave McVittie, chairman of Chichester Area Talking News

Chichester Area Talking News has hosted a conference for all Talking News organisations in the south of England.

There were 77 delegates from 15 Talking News organisations, from as far afield as North Devon and Norfolk, at St Richard’s Hospital on Saturday. They were welcomed by Chichester mayor Peter Evans.

At the start of the conference, Dereck Double, president of Chichester Rotary Club, presented a cheque for £1,000 to Dave McVittie, chairman of Chichester Area Talking News (CATN).

Local news and features are recorded on memory sticks by CATN for visually-impaired people in Chichester, Midhurst and Petworth, as far north as Haslemere.

Mr McVittie has chosen CATN as his charity of the year, raising money to support the essential work of helping to keep visually-impaired people in touch with news from their community.

Entirely self-funding and run by volunteers, CATN was started in 1975. Memory sticks are sent out every two weeks to around 400 people.

The main content is a round-up of local news and features taken from the three editions of the Observer newspaper.

There are also Nature Notes and Village News, as well as a quarterly magazine called Insight which has articles and information of local and general interest.

The memory sticks are produced in a well-equipped, custom-designed studio in the grounds of St Richard’s Hospital.