The Comet celebrates Local Newspaper Week

THIS week the Comet celebrates Local Newspaper Week (May 13 to 19), which offers a chance to look at the valuable role local papers play in the community.

THIS week the Comet celebrates Local Newspaper Week (May 13 to 19), which offers a chance to look at the valuable role local papers play in the community.

Local Newspaper Week is supported by high profile figures such as television presenter Lorraine Kelly and London mayor Boris Johnson.

This year its focus is on the local media’s freedom and its ability to scrutinise authority and remind those in power of their responsibilities.

Ms Kelly, known primarily for her television work, started her career as a local newspaper reporter when she was just 17.

She said: “A local paper should always provide insight into the workings of local government and hold those in power to account whenever needed. I would not be doing the job I do today without my big break in local journalism.

“Whenever I travel to a different part of the country I make sure I get a copy of the local paper to give me a real insight into the area

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“ I always buy my local daily and weekly newspapers and life would be a lot less colourful and I would be less informed if I didn’t have the opportunity to do so.”

Mr Johnson, who previously worked as a journalist for The Daily Telegraph, said: “I’ve had the pleasure of meeting many local journalists and I’ve always been impressed by their in-depth knowledge and determination to get to the heart of an issue – even if it does raise tough questions for me.

“The way we ingest news is changing fast but I truly believe there remains an important place for well-informed, local journalism that speaks about the issues and concerns of the local community and gives people an important voice to share how they feel about this great country we live in.”

The Comet works hard to keep its readers informed and aware of local events, maintaining its place at the heart of the community.

Figures have shown more than 30 million people read a local newspaper every week, making it the most widely read print medium in Britain.

For more information on Local Newspaper Week, visit www.localnews paperweek.co.uk or follow @localpaperweek on Twitter.

On Tuesday, Comet reporter Martin Dunne took to the streets of Hitchin to find out what readers think of their local paper.

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