1  Who are your programmes designed for?

Anyone who, for whatever reason, is unable to keep in touch with what is going on in their local community by reading the local newspapers (Herts Advertiser and St Albans & Harpenden Review, magazines and so on). Most of our listeners are visually impaired, but our service is also available to others who have difficulty reading whether for short, medium or long term.

2  Which areas do you cover?

St Albans, Harpenden, Redbourn, Flamstead, Markyate, London Colney, Park Street, Colney Heath, Chiswell Green, Sandridge, Wheathampstead, Kimpton and all other villages nearby

3  What do I receive each week?

Each week (usually on Saturday) your postman will deliver a wallet or pouch. Inside this there will be a memory stick containing that week’s programme. (See Questions 6 and 7 for other ways to listen.)

4  How do I listen to these memory sticks?

We will provide you – on loan and entirely free-of-charge – with a purpose-built and simple to use play-back unit. When you decide to become a listener, we will arrange to visit you and explain how it works.

5  Can I listen to the programmes on my laptop or PC?

Yes. All you need is a USB slot into which the memory sticks can be inserted.

6  Can I listen to the programmes ‘on line’?

Yes. You – or a friend or family member – can download each weekly programme from our website.  You can also listen to our programmes on a mobile device using the ‘Talking Newspaper’ app.

7  Can I receive these programmes if I am not registered blind?

Yes. If you are unable to read standard (N12) newspaper print, we will be able to send our programmes to you free-of-charge.  If you have visual impairment for whatever reason, we can arrange for you to receive our programmes.

8  When do I need to send the memory sticks back to you?

In order for us to keep sending you the programmes for the following weeks, we ask you to post each of them back to us within 14 days or as soon as you have listened to it. (If you want to keep one for longer than that, let us know.) The wallet or pouch carries a return address label, so all you have to do is put the memory stick into the wallet, zip it up completely and arrange for the wallet to be placed into a postbox.

9  Who pays for this service?

We are a registered charity and we depend on gifts, donations, bequests, sponsorship and street collections to raise the cash to buy the playback units, memory sticks, wallets and all the other items, including maintenance of our sound studio in St Albans . We are all volunteers whose time is ‘given free’. Postage is provided free-of-charge under the Royal Mail’s “Articles for the Blind” service.

10  Can I receive the Talking Newspaper on a trial basis?

Of course you can. But we think that, once you have heard our programmes for a month or so, you won’t want to stop. (At least that is what our many listeners tell us!)

11  How do I become a Listener?

All you have to do is contact us. The contact details are on each page of this website.

12  How do I become a Volunteer?

All you have to do is contact us. The contact details are on each page of this website.

St Albans Talking Newspaper