Bristol24/7 might not still be here without your help. Some of our staff are still on furlough, we have had to stop employing almost all of our freelancers and we have not published a printed magazine since April.
But over the last few months, I have never been prouder to be the Editor of Bristol24/7 and to call Bristol my home.
We remain in a perilous situation as a business. But the good news is that with your help we are now telling more stories from across our city than ever before, with our magazine making a welcome return next month.
Throughout the coronavirus pandemic, the good will from Bristol24/7 readers, supporters and advertisers has meant so much to our small team, which – including me – has only three full-time members of editorial staff.
From those of you who pay £5 a month to be members to companies that value the work that we do and have become our much-valued business members, I want to say a huge thank you.
A community reporter scheme is now enabling reporters to tell stories from their own communities. We are reporting more news than ever before from areas including Sea Mills, Knowle West and Hartcliffe.
This week, in collaboration with several other Bristol organisations, we will be helping to launch a new local oral history podcast, 12 Communities 1 Bristol, telling even more stories from areas of the city that can often feel marginalised in mainstream media coverage.
Our community reporter scheme was funded by Philip Morris International (PMI), who responded to our call for help to fund this bold initiative; and following a successful pilot we have secured further funding to extend the project.
We received £25,000 to employ community reporters and to continue supporting journalism training at a time when we had lost almost all other revenues, and were no longer able to sustain our work delivering our award-winning vocational training and work experience programme.
We made it very clear at the time that this funding would have no strings attached and we would not publish any articles about PMI or their products while we were receiving their support.
If you feel that you can spare some of your hard-earned cash to help Bristol24/7 continue by becoming a supporter member, or think that your company could become a business member, I would be so grateful.
2020 has been so difficult for us all and Bristol24/7 is no different. But independent journalism has never been more important than now and with your help we will continue to be your trusted source of news in these testing times.
Main photo by Martin Booth