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Community newswire saved after £1.9m lottery grant

An online news service axed at the end of March due to government cutbacks is to relaunched with the help of a £1.9m lottery grant.

The Community Newswire was originally set up by the Press Association and the Media Trust to help people and community groups get their stories into the national and regional press

As first revealed on HTFP, it closed on 31 March after losing its funding from the Cabinet Office.

Now it is set to resume in July as the result of a £1.89m Big Lottery Fund grant to a series of Media Trust projects.

The charity is to also set to use the windfall to establish a network of news hubs to support citizen journalism and to help communities and charities get their voices heard.

Caroline Diehl MBE, Chief Executive of Media Trust, said: “This funding is fantastic news for communities and charities throughout the UK.

“Together with Big Lottery Fund and Media Trust’s partners and corporate members, we will be able to connect communities to share their stories with each other locally, regionally, nationally and throughout the UK in a way that inspires us all to create positive social change.

“The power of voice should be a universal entitlement, and this funding, supported by our amazing network of media volunteers and mentors and our Community Newswire and Community Channel platforms, is a significant step forward in realising that vision.”

The grant will also support the continuance of the Media Trust’s online and television platform, Community Channel, which broadcasts content put together by local community groups.

Community Channel will also receive further funding from the Cabinet Office and will continue to broadcast on Sky, Virgin and Freeview.

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