On a bright sunny March afternoon, volunteers and friends of the Long Eaton & District Talking Newspaper met at Trent Lock Golf & Country Club restaurant to celebrate their 41st Anniversary.   

Their specials guests were the Mayor of Erewash, Councillor Chris Corbett and his wife the Mayoress, Linda Corbett. They also welcomed John May MBE, chairman of the Lichfield Talking News and his wife Pauline, hotfoot from celebrating their Golden Wedding Anniversary. They were also joined by Jon Coutts-Walker, Community Champion at ASDA Long Eaton who presented a cheque to the Chairman, Martin Sykes for £1,000 so the charity can purchase more memory stick players for their ever-growing listener base that currently totals 150. Nancy Plummer of Erewash VIP’s (Visually Impaired Group based at Breaston Methodist Church) also attended. For many years Nancy worked for the Social Services Visual Impairment Team in Erewash and was at the inaugural meeting for the Talking Newspaper back in 1978. Nancy has provided listeners for many years. Carole Bagnall who is the leader of the Aston-upon-Trent Book Club that generously and regularly donates to the Talking Newspaper was also present.   

Some of the supporters could not attend owing to work commitments on the day but nevertheless sent their very best wishes. These included Beverley and Andy Brooks of Brooks Computer  Solutions who designed, donated and maintain their superb web-site, ​www.longeatontn.org.uk  that carries all their broadcasts, Geoff Pickance, the Eye Clinic Liaison Officer at QMC, who is one  of the Talking Newspaper’s listeners and is also a wonderful advocate of what they offer and Dave  Lambert, Creative Director of Banana Kick, an advertising agency in Leeds, who is responsible for  all the Talking Newspaper’s artwork designs, logos, certificates and so on.   

After a splendid lunch, the chairman Martin Sykes played an audio message from their President Robert Lindsay, the much loved and greatly revered actor of Citizen Smith and My Family fame, who has his roots in Ilkeston. Robert could not join them, but in his message, he shared his delight at being President and entertained everyone with memories of his varied and often amusing year. The humour, warmth and sincerity of his message was very much appreciated by everyone who feel very fortunate to have someone like Robert as their President. The Mayor shared some personal moving reflections about his time in office. Councillor Corbett has represented the Wilsthorpe Ward on the Borough Council since 1999 and was Leader of the Council from 2007 to 2017 when he became Deputy Mayor. He also serves on Sawley Parish Council. John May shared his knowledge and experience of Talking Newspapers in general and the Lichfield Taking News in particular, of which he has been chairman for nearly 40 years.   

Martin then presented certificates of appreciation to all of their guests including Eileen Atkinson and Joan Green who have recently retired from the Talking Newspaper after many years of loyal service. Long Service Certificates were presented to John and Ann Tivey.   

If you know of anyone who would really appreciate becoming a listener of the Long Eaton & District Talking Newspaper please contact Martin Sykes on mobile; 07970 914930 or email him on martyysykes899@gmail.com.