“We welcome it, but we are wary”- Swindon Viewpoint on Community TV

Last month we looked in detail at government plans to introduce local community television in the UK. Regardless of the obstacles in making this a reality, it undoubtedly has the potential to transform community media, and establish a powerful new platform for our local areas.

Martin Parry, with permission from Swindon Viewpoint

Surprisingly, Community TV is not a new idea. Swindon Viewpoint describe themselves as a “focal point for the visual life and times” of the Swindon area. Beginning in 1958, they have transformed into an online living, breathing and growing documentary about all aspects of their local history (and present!). It is an endlessly explorable vault of diverse, well-created programmes. Despite all this, Swindon is not on any list of potential locations in plans for rolling out new local stations. Dubbed “the original YouTube”, we spoke to Chairman Martin Parry about what community media like this can really achieve.

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Local TV: Explained

By the end of this year, Culture Secretary Jeremy Hunt plans to give out the first Local
Television licenses in the UK. He hopes to have a number of initial services up and running by June 2015.

Jeremy Hunt – Creative Commons, Courtesy of HowardLake, Flikr

His plans have been widely criticised as a vanity project—unviable and complicated.So what does it all really mean?

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