FENLANDER: Community TV project is launched in Fenland

LEADING members of the Chatteris Christmas Lights group were among the first to seize the chance to get some free publicity, courtesy of a new community television project now up and running in Fenland.

Chris Savill and Reg Tibbitts, the group’s chairman and treasurer, went in front of the cameras at the launch of the project in Chatteris last week to outline their work and appeal for more volunteers.

Mr Savill said that all their efforts were rewarded the moment the festive lights were turned on in the town. “Switch-on is my Christmas,” he said. “Everyone’s faces just light up and glow.”

The two men were filmed in Chatteris Library, in one of three TV studios that have been set up in Fenland as part of an Arts Council-funded scheme being delivered locally by Popcorn TV. The others are in the libraries in Whittlesey and Wisbech.

Community groups, councillors and other individuals can go there and either be interviewed or take in their own footage to be edited and uploaded to the Popcorn TV web channel and Shape Your Place. People can also submit their existing films to Popcorn.

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Young people are being encouraged to join the team as volunteers to take on key roles as news anchors, community reporters, film-makers, editors and researchers.

The project is being coordinated by Popcorn’s Marian Savill and Katherine Nightingale.

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Marian Savill said: “This is a really exciting project that can benefit community groups in lots of different ways. It gives them a great platform to help them recruit new members and promote their activities and events more widely.”

Katherine Nightingale said: “Young people don’t need to be skilled in editing or media - we can teach them new skills that can support their CVs, college applications or job applications. Besides, it’s just a lot of fun!”

Anyone keen to get involved can either book a slot in one of the studios or arrange for a reporter to come out and film on site or at a particular event.

The three studios will be open between 3pm and 7pm on the following dates from January to March:

Chatteris: Every other Monday, from January 14

Whittlesey: Every other Tuesday, from January 15

Wisbech: Every other Tuesday, from January 22

• For more information or to book a studio slot, call Marian Savill on 0783 769 8821 or e-mail marian@20twentyproductions.co.uk, or Katherine Nightingale on 0786 913 5922 or Katherine@20twentyproductions.co.uk

• The Chatteris Christmas Lights group is always looking for more volunteers. More details at www.chatterischristmaslights.co.uk

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