Community hero celebrated after 32 years at talking newspaper
PUBLISHED: 09:15 19 December 2018
A retired motor electrician who used his 60-year-old love of recording to help his community was celebrated at a party this week.
The tea party was held at Diss Bowls Club on Tuesday for 76-year-old David Holland, who has helped to run talking newspaper Waveney Words since its first meeting in April 1986. He is moving to Cheltenham to be near his daughter.
Primarily chief technician, Mr Holland also contributes interviews and has served on every committee over 32 years.
Mr Holland said: “I have been recording since 1958 with the big reels, so I’ve always had the interest. When Waveney Words wanted to start a talking paper in Diss I went to the meeting to get it going. I turned out to be the official technician. I now mainly concentrate on the interviews.
“When I started out there was an item in the local paper about a lady who was painting silk scarves. And she said to me when I went to see her, ‘I’m not sure about this, blind people can’t see painted silk scarves’. I said, ‘I don’t know, it’s the first time I’ve done this! Let’s just do it and see what happens’.
“So I did the interview, and a few months later I met one of our listeners, and she said, ‘didn’t you do that piece about the silk scarves, I remember because it brought back the colours’. And I thought, if I can do that, I can talk about anything. Since then I’ve done anything from silk scarves to someone suffering with cancer, someone whose written a book, and I talked to Baroness Elaine Murphy recently.
“We are moving over to Cheltenham because I am now 76 and if we don’t do it now we never will. We shall go there and probably carry on and do some interviews with people of interest over there and send them back.”
Audrey Moskowitz, chairman of Waveney Words, 85, said: “I’m partially sighted and can no longer read a newspaper. Having the local news and the information from the RNIB has been a life line for me.
“Waveney Words does a brilliant job, especially with David’s fascinating interviews. For me personally it’s a very important resource. David is very friendly and laid back, but extremely capable.
“We’ll miss him but I have been impressed with the number of dedicated volunteers we have so I’m sure we’ll keep going as strong as ever.”