EDITORIAL: Brixton Blog and Bugle – the next step in community news publishing

It seems like a long time since January this year when we re-launched the Brixton Blog as a comprehensive news website. We’ve done a lot since then – got the website up and running, organised events and launched our monthly newspaper, the Brixton Bugle, in June.

It’s been hard work and we couldn’t have done it without huge input from all our contributors, designers, interviewees, friends in the community and, of course, our readers.

We’re now delighted to announce the next step in growing the Brixton Blog to become what we really want it to be – a fully-fledged community newspaper

Firstly, we welcome life-long Brixton boy Luke Waterfield to the team as Managing Editor. Luke will be helping us to make the Blog and Bugle more sustainable and take over management of back of office functions we currently don’t have much time to do (photocopying, filing, all the exciting bits).

The second bit of good news is that we have secured the support of the Journalism Foundation. The Foundation, headed by former editor of the Independent, Simon Kelner, has recognised the Blog and Bugle as a vital source of grassroots news and released some funding to help us reach our full potential.

This means a few changes. As you may have noticed, we are carrying adverts in the Brixton Bugle and we will be expanding this in the paper and on the website in order to put the Blog and Bugle on a sustainable footing (until now we’ve been paying for printing and other costs partly out of our own pockets).

We are therefore now looking for a part-time advertising salesperson to sell ads across both the paper and online. Without these ads, we simply can’t continue.

The aim is to make the Blog and Bugle project financially sustainable so we can keep making an impact on this very local level. Any money we do raise through advertising will be invested back into the Blog and Bugle, and into other projects we are keen to support in the local area, such as journalism workshops with young people from Brixton, public events and debates.

We will be very careful about what adverts we choose to carry. We will support independent local business above chains and will not feature any adverts we feel promote unethical products or services.

Next, we are moving to a new office in the Brix at St Matthews, Brixton Hill, right in the heart of Brixton.  Being at the centre of the community should make us more approachable and accessible to everybody – and means we can work with and train journalism students and other contributors to create even more cracking content.

All of this means we can support the community by better holding people to account. We will be able to cover more council affairs, community projects and meetings of vital bodies like the Community Police Consultative Group (CPCG) while fulfilling our remit to inform, entertain and stimulate discussion.

If you have any suggestions about the Blog please do get in touch at info@brixtonblog.com.

And huge thanks for your support so far,

Tim and Zoe

Brixton Blog editors