Campaign for Tour de France shows strength of local newspapers

The News has campaigned to bring the Tour de France to Portsmouth
The News has campaigned to bring the Tour de France to Portsmouth

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SEEING cyclists on the Tour de France in Portsmouth would be a remarkable feat for the city.

That’s why The News started a campaign to see the first part of the contest, the Grand Depart, take place in the area in 2019.

Local media is an essential forum for members of the public to acquire information as knowledge about what’s going on in the local area

Donna Jones, council leader

The campaign is being highlighted during Local Newspaper Week which celebrates the important community role local papers play.

Councillor Donna Jones, leader of Portsmouth City Council, said: ‘Local media is an essential forum for members of the public to acquire information about what’s going on in the local area.

‘It’s also a great way for local businesses and organisations such as councils to promote what’s going on in the area.

‘The Tour de France has been a great example of a brilliantly spirited campaign by The News featuring professional cyclists, the city council and the Tour de France organisers so that people understand what these organisations are trying to achieve.’

Another campaign backed by The News was the police’s drink-driving crackdown.

Throughout December, Hampshire police went out in force to catch drink and drug-drivers.

As they were convicted, The News published details of whose who were caught.

Meanwhile, public consultation have been carried out recently in relation to the future of lifesaving vascular surgery.

NHS England Wessex, the health trust which pays for the service at Queen Alexandra Hospital in Portsmouth, wants to see all major vein operations move to Southampton.

And The News has led the campaign to keep the surgery in Portsmouth since talk of changes being made first started.

Health bosses have repeatedly suggested moving the service from Portsmouth to Southampton – only to be met with implacable resistance from patients and clinicians who know how important the surgery is.