IF you thought it was all about vinyl for the older generation – think again.
Blackpool’s Talking Newspaper service provides audio books as well as an extensive list of magazines and papers for many elderly or Fylde coast residents with special needs.
Volunteers have collected more than 2,500 talking books on cassette – but the charity can no longer get their hands on tape recorders and need the public’s help to come up with CDs on which books have been recorded.
Volunteers are now asking local people to donate any audio books on CD to help with the mammoth task of replacing the mountain of tapes gathering dust in their library.
Mike Maunder, Talking Newspaper services manager, told The Gazette: “We’ve finally had to give in and relegate all the tapes to the bin.
“People have been so kind in donating them to us for almost 35 years, but in recent months our clients were all saying they couldn’t find tape players anywhere to play them on.
“We would be so grateful for any books on CD, from crime to westerns and war stories – if we don’t get them we couldn’t carry on.”
The service, based at the Blackpool Blind Society on Bosworth Place, South Shore, has 1,900 people who depend on the audio books to replace TV and provide comfort when they cannot go out.
The charity are also looking for volunteers to help record their newspapers on a monthly basis.
Mr Maunder added: “We have 127 very dedicated volunteers, some who have come every month for almost 35 years, which is quite something.
“But we are always on the look-out for more people who can give up a couple of hours a month to read from a paper or magazine.
“The papers are pre-assigned and any accents are welcome.
“The people we record them for often live alone, or don’t have many people talk to, so it is such a valuable service.”
Evelyn Turner, 94, lives at the Blind Society and has used the charity for more than 20 years.
She added: “The service is invaluable to me.
“I can’t watch TV, and I can’t get out, so I love listening to stories.
“My favourites are by Dick Francis, James Herriot and Audrey Howard.
“I hope if people have books on CDs and they are just lying around they will help us out.”
If you want to donate CDs, visit the following libraries – Thornton, St Annes, Fleetwood, Ansdell, Freckleton or Lytham, or drop them into the society.
To become a volunteer, contact Mike on (01253) 362686.