A WIRRAL newspaper for the “blind and visually handicapped” celebrated its 40th anniversary.

Wirral Talking Newspaper (WTN) started in February 1982 after a small team of people recorded the first edition of a spoken word newspaper in the basement of Wirral Christian Centre.

The first edition was dispatched to 92 listeners in the Birkenhead area.

Drawing mainly on local news stories Wirral Talking Newspaper for the blind and visually handicapped as it was then known kept people in touch with their community and provided a source of information enjoyment and insight. The paper still relies wholly on charitable donations to publish.

When it started the news was recorded onto cassette tapes, but nowadays the technical side has moved on, and listeners receive a memory stick in the post every two weeks with news and a magazine style content, which they hear on the players, which are provided free of charge.

The Mayor of Wirral Counsellor, Cherry Povall and Mayoress Mrs Sheila Clarke, joined more than 50 listeners, readers, magazine editors and content editors to enjoy an evening of celebration and the business of the 40th A.G.M with the night crowned with the cutting of a cake to mark the anniversary.

The Mayor also presented Patricia Thew, the chairman of WTN, a framed long service certificate from the Talking News Federation which will now be displayed in the Offices of the Charity at Maritime House in Birkenhead.