Happy birthday – and thank you!

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A year ago this newspaper launched on the internet. More than 1,000 stories later Rye News continues to cover our lives.

This is a people’s paper. It is here because of volunteers. It is not about making money. It is about people caring enough about their community to write about it, to photograph it, and to publish it. For free.

We cannot pretend that producing Rye News is easy. It isn’t. We need more people.

Above is a group of familiar faces – all local people – and without them Rye News would not exist. Mostly, they go unsung so this is a big thank-you to them. We don’t have room for photographs of everyone involved, so let us mention some more names: Nick Taylor, Simon Wright, Dee Alsey, Gill Clamp, Paddy Harvey, Martin Blincow, Shane Ridgers, Allan Downend, Janet Waddams, Berni Fiddimore, Heidi Foster, John Andrews, Sally Compton, Conrad Freezer, John Wylie, David Mayne, Ray Prewer, Shelley Jebb, Richard Farhall, Judy Pettitt, Anne Grainger, Linda Harland, Judith Wall, Sandra Lanigan, Pip al-Khafaji, Glen Twamley, Richard Moore, Martin Bruce and Alexander Stiller. There are more. To all: thank you for making this paper what it is.

We have lost a few volunteers over the year because of the pressure of work – among them the very talented Richard Hayden and Tim Redfern – but we have managed to expand. We went into print last autumn as part of Rye’s monthly magazine Fixtures – and for that a thank-you to Ian Foster of Adams.

All those pictured above are volunteers with one exception: Mark McGee, the head of InfoJuice, a web design and digital marketing consultant. He built us from the floor up and tweaks our website as our needs change. He has shown remarkable sympathy and patience with our project; always calm, always assured, even when on one occasion our home page had vanished into the ether.

We need more volunteers in all areas, especially editing. We are building new teams and you might want to join one of them. Sport’s publisher is John Minter, who in 2007 was in the GB team at the triathlon world championships – he’s also a very experienced yachtsman. Minter is working with Dan Lake to push our sport coverage. Opinions is now headed by Christopher Strangeways and John Howlett. The youngest faces belong to Britainy Rae – she writes a regular, popular “Rye Me” column in the Living section – and Kitty Tucker, who will be joining us when she’s finished her finals at university. We want more young volunteers to make Living even more lively.

Rye News is here to publish other people’s opinions, not our own. So whether you’re a councillor or a citizen, you can write for us. We hope you will, too. Together, we make Rye News the paper that it is. Thank you again to all who are already doing that.

* If you want to join us, write to info@ryenews.org.uk