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Tony Blair writes about local pride – and the local press

The Prime Minister has written a special article for Local Newspaper Week, highlighting the thirst for local news and information that he believes is being fed by a growing sense of community.

Tony Blair said: “There is a renewed pride in local achievements and successes and a stronger need to be involved in the life of your neighbourhood.

“I think this helps explain the renaissance of local newspapers in this country. The best of our local papers – and there are many, many examples covering from our biggest cities to our most rural areas – play a vital role in reflecting and building the unique character and values of the community they serve.”

He wrote the 350-word article for Local Newspaper Week, which starts on Monday. And in it he also points out the vital role played by regional and local newspapers to a healthy democracy.

He said: “All politicians recognise the importance of local newspapers to them and their communities‚Ķ Campaigning and effective local papers also help us do our jobs better, ensuring we don’t lose sight of the issues that matter.

“They help, too, hold us to account for what we do and what we don’t.”

Local Newspaper Week is organised every year by the Newspaper Society to raise awareness on a national level of the importance of the regional press to Britain’s communities and to demonstrate the collective power and influence of the industry.

Press packs – including the PM’s article – were sent to all regional and local newspaper editors to help them prepare.

Last year hundreds of newspapers took part, by running articles, features and supplements, as well as holding community events, competitions and displays.

Do you have a story about the regional press? Ring 0116 227 3122/3121, or
e-mail pastill@nep.co.uk