This week I’m down in Cornwall doing work experience at the Cornish Guardian. So what I thought I’d do is to blog about my week and what I’ve been doing during my time down here.

Now you may notice that this first blog is appearing on a Tuesday rather than a Monday. Very good reason for that. Yesterday the weather was so awful I didn’t want to use my camera for fear of it breaking (after a recent repair I’m quite paranoid about it!) so the photos here are from Tuesday when the weather improved. Secondly, the Cornish Guardian is a weekly paper and goes to print on a Monday evening so the reporter for the area, Stuart Radnedge, takes Tuesday afternoons off to make up for his long 12 hour day on the Monday. So I didn’t really have much choice!

So where is this office?

Well it’s in Newquay and you may notice it doesn’t look too big. It isn’t. Only two people work here during the week, covering the local area for the Cornish Guardian who have their main offices in Truro.

From the outside it’s not readily noticable and is discreetly tucked away next to a nightclub looking more like an estate agents than a newspaper office. I don’t mind this though as it’s a different way of working and a different atmosphere to what I’m used to. Rather than being one of many in a big open plan office in a city centre, here it’s down to one or two people to cover a mainly rural area for the local paper.And just because it’s small and away from the city doesn’t mean that there’s any less swearing or urgency to prepare for deadlines!

And as you can see, when you get views like this on your way to work, who cares?!

First thing upon arrival on Monday was go straight back out again with the local reporter to RAF St Mawgan to interview the station’s Wing Commander about his failed medical and imminent discharge from the air force. For security reasons we had to hop into an RAF police car from the main gate to the Wing Commander’s house which is on the base. In this instance Land Rover Defender, man those cars are an effort to get into!

Anyway after that was over, a trip back in the Defender and another car trip took us back to the office for work to be done. I was going to take a photo of the the entrance to the base but, again, for security reasons thought best not to. So here’s a still from Google Street View…

During the day a few stories came in for me to work on. My main article was about an ambulance which had its windscreen wipers nicked the day before. During a visit to Newquay Police Station I asked the Inspector if he knew if there had been any progress. After me explaining the crime to him I quickly realised that he didn’t know which was strange as although I was disappointed not to get any more information on the crime, filling in an Inspector about a crime was quite fun!

The rest of the day was spent mainly finishing off copy in the office, making phonecalls and fielding more calls for my temporary colleague who was busy chasing up leads to other stories. A late trip up to Newquay Ambulance Station, to get a picture of an Ambulance with windscreen wipers held on by cable ties after the originals were stolen the day before, was my only time away from the desk during the afternoon which rounded off Monday.

Tuesday broke to more grey skies. After fighting through the traffic in St Austell I made it to the office at 9am. There wasn’t too much to do except chase up quotes and information for a few articles for next week’s paper. Although it isn’t out for another eight days, the work starts here and already a quote which I thought was going one way suddenly went another when new information came to light during the conversation. The joys of journalism!

In the foreground you can see the desk I’ve used for the past couple of days to chase up stories such as builders helping schools, ambulance wiper blades being stolen and plans for a new One Stop. OK they may be standard run of the mill stories (Stuart in the corner has been working on slightly more exciting things) they’re still important must be covered by someone.

A lunchtime finish allowed us to enjoy a try up before heading off for the day. With the weather being so good in Newquay I took the opportunity to take a couple of shots before the cloud came and it duly arrived the minute I left the town. Now I’m back at home in Lostwithiel with the rain bucketing down outside. So to cheer myself up here are some photos of Newquay in the sunshine from earlier on today.

Ciao.


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