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Landmark for talking newspaper

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HH-1-16.12.15-wFORTY YEARS ago during the last week of December, a group of Helensburgh people sat round a microphone and recorded an experimental version of a talking newspaper for the blind.

They were so successful that the experimental version actually became the first edition of Headline Helensburgh, the talking newspaper serving the blind and otherwise visually handicapped in Helensburgh and District.

Modelled on one already in existence in Wales, it turned out to be the first in Scotland, pipping Dunfermline Sound by a few weeks.

Now there are nearly 70, most of them in the Central Belt but also covering the more rural areas north and south.

Last Wednesday evening a small team — including three of the founder members — gathered to record the first 2016 edition of Scotland’s oldest registered talking newspaper for the blind.

It has changed over the four decades. A monthly half hour of local news, views and sport has broadened into an hour-long twice-a-month cassette, with higher sound recording quality and the ability to be converted, when required, to a cd.

The development of news services on local radio stations has reduced the demand for the free service, but it still has some 30 blind recipients keen to hear the news from two issues of the Advertiser.

The full story of Headline Helensburgh can be read here. The picture shows Peter Douglas, who has recorded the master cassette from the start, at work on the mid-December edition.

Last Updated ( Thursday, 14 January 2016 18:40 )  

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Second Winter Open Meeting

Cleland-Sneddon-wThe next Winter Open Meeting will be held at Helensburgh Civic Centre at 7.30pm on October 25. Cleland Sneddon will speak about childhood holidays in Rosneath. All welcome.

Winter Talks 2017-18

  • Wednesday September 27 2017 — AGM; then Professor John Hume: History of local churches
  • Wednesday October 25 — Cleland Sneddon: Childhood holidays in Rosneath
  • Wednesday November 29 — David Bruce: Greatrex, Forger and Photographer

  • Wednesday January 31 2018 — Mike Thornley: The Glenarn Garden
  • Wednesday February 28 — Bruce and Nicola Jamieson: Developing the Mackintosh Club
  • Wednesday March 28 — Richard Reeve: A Brief History of the Rosneath Peninsula

Meetings in Helensburgh Civic Centre at 7.30pm.

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