I wrote my email newsletter for constituents and sent it out on Monday. It goes to 1000 homes in the Whickham area directly but we know many more people receive it as it is forwarded by friends and family (including to some expats on the other side of the world!). Edition 59 led on school closures but also had coverage of other local news stories, including the latest news on the failed plans to apply for opencasting on the edge of local villages, plans (at last) to refurbish and rebuild Whickham Comprehensive, Sunniside and Swalwell Parks and some planning news stories. We also slipped in a political story about the general election and the fact Blaydon constituency is a two horse race between Labour and the Lib Dems. The Conservatives are well out of it here.
The advantage of having a big email list is that I can produce much more up to date information about what's happening locally. The timescale for a leaflet can be measured perhaps in days, more likely in weeks. With an email newsletter, we can send out news stories which will be yesterday's news by the end of the week. It also allows for a much easier two-way flow of information - my inbox now has a large number of emails from residents replying to efocus by raising other issues.
Anyway, we are already working on edition number 60 which should be ready in a couple of weeks' time. And we hope for have some links to our latest videos and audios on it.
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