Latest Activities & Events

Our Afternoon Tea Party Was “An Absolute Delight!

Peter Aldous MP with listener rep, Lily

This year, we held our AGM2022 on Saturday 11th June at Bungay Community Centre. The AGM was followed immediately by an afternoon tea, attended by nearly 50 people, which included listeners, present and past volunteers for Three Rivers, members of Suffolk Sight and Peter Aldous MP.

Chairman Emma Welton said, “it was a lovely afternoon. Our AGM was really positive. My wonderful committee are so proactive, and they are completely behind my drive to open up our service of a talking newspaper to people who are not registered visually impaired, but who cannot, due to a variety of health issues, access printed material. My stumbling block is ensuring that the postal system for these potential listeners is identical to our current system, the Royal Mail Articles for the Blind. I am pleased to say that our local MP, Peter Aldous, together with East Suffolk Council, are in the process of investigating this issue with Royal Mail.

Our afternoon tea was an absolute delight. We had a number of listeners come along to chat with volunteers and other listeners, whilst drinking tea and eating delicious cakes. In fact, one listener has been with Three Rivers almost from its inception 30 years ago, which was wonderful to hear. I would like to thank Maisebrook Farm and the Co-Op Community Fund who provided very generous raffle prizes, which helped to raise nearly £150”.

Chair Emma with Robin, Shelagh & Jessie
Tea, Chat & Cakes Galore!


Three Rivers Attends Community Partnership Event

 Emma and Jill with MP Peter Aldous
 Emma and Alan

On Saturday May 21st 2022, Chairperson Emma Welton and two other Three Rivers volunteers, Jill and Alan, attended a showcase event at Bungay Community Centre, to promote a range of community support available in the Bungay and wider area.

The Three Rivers stall attracted the attention of local MP Peter Aldous who spent some time chatting to Emma about our service for the blind and visually impaired.

It was interesting to meet some of the district council members and to obtain information about potential funding for future Three Rivers projects.

A music workshop at the end of the session got everyone singing!

 Music maestro!

Jim Lumsden Memorial Service

A Memorial Service was held for our much loved volunteer, Jim Lumsden RIP, at St Luke’s Church, Rigbourne Hill, Beccles on Friday, April 29th at 11am.

Despite Jim’s strict orders for “NO FUSS”,  the service was attended by a large crowd and several tributes were paid to this popular Beccles stalwart.

Former Chairman, Vaughan Shea, led the tribute on behalf of Three Rivers Talking Newspaper, a copy of which can be read below:

A Tribute on behalf of Three Rivers TN by Vaughan Shea

Good morning. For those of you who don’t know me, my name is Vaughan Shea and I was, for over 10 years, the chairman of the 3 Rivers Talking Newspaper for the Blind.  And it is in connection with Jim as a volunteer for the Talking Newspaper that I want to talk about today.

Jim was a long standing volunteer for the T.N and was a regular, very reliable and well liked reader on the C team.  I first met Jim in the early 1990’s  and was immediately struck by his presence in the room.  If Jim was there, you certainly knew it – Jim’s response on meeting never changed from the first time to the last. “How are you Jim?” I would enquire, and the response would always be “OLDER… and DAFTER”.

Jim would often have a musical score with him on a recording night and in between his readings he would be silently mouthing the words. There was always plenty of banter around the table with his fellow readers, with Mary Weavers in particular, being near neighbours and fellow golfers as well as their interest in the talking newspaper. Jim’s hand-over to his fellow reader Pat was usually “And now over to PATRICIA”.

Jim was an amazing ambassador for the talking newspaper, helping organise and participating in a number of concerts over the years with the Friends in Harmony choir, the  proceeds from which would benefit 3 Rivers. He was also very persuasive in getting others to join the 3 Rivers team. Indeed, our current Chair Emma was cajoled into joining the talking newspaper by Jim.

I also fondly remember the annual cake stall held in the precinct in Beccles, to raise funds for the talking newspaper. Jim’s arrival at the stall was usually a fairly noisy affair as of course he knew so many people.  And then, the greetings and pleasantries over with, his choice of cake?  Of course it had to be a DUNDEE cake!

I know that Jim has been quoted as saying how lucky he was to live in Beccles, but I can’t help thinking that in fact we were very lucky to have Jim in our midst.  Many people’s lives were made all the richer and organisations like 3 Rivers Talking Newspaper and others benefitted greatly because of Jim Lumsden, and I am proud to have known him.



Come And Meet Us For a Chat!

Please come along and say hello to Emma and Jill at a Community Partnership event to be held in Bungay Community Centre on Saturday, 21st May from 11am to 1pm.

Community partnerships are a great way for the council, partners and communities to work together and Three Rivers Talking Newspaper is delighted to be involved along with lots of other local community groups.

The address is Old Grammar Lane, Bungay NR35 1PU. There is plenty of parking and disabled access throughout the building.

Do come along and let your voice be heard!


Jim Lumsden RIP

We’re so sad to share news of the recent death of a long standing and much loved volunteer at Three Rivers, Jim Lumsden.    Many listeners will remember our larger-than-life Scot, Jim, as Reader on the former C team.  But Jim’s involvement was not limited to reading – he was also involved in Committee meetings and in organising fundraising concerts and other events on behalf of Three Rivers.

Some of you might also have known Jim from his days as a dentist in Beccles, as warden in St Michael’s Church, Beccles, or from elsewhere.  Let’s put it this way…if you ever came across Jim, you will not have forgotten him!

He will be sorely missed.

Our sincere condolences go to Jim’s family and his many friends.
May he rest in peace.

PS:  A Memorial Service is being held for Jim at St Luke’s Church, Rigbourne Hill, Beccles on Friday, April 29th at 11am.

A lovely tribute to Jim was included in a recent edition of the Beccles & Bungay Journal.   You can access the Obituary here.

Our Best Christmas Present!

We’re delighted to announce that, just before Christmas,  we were granted £2,784.13 funding from Suffolk Community Foundation through the David & Jill Simpson Fund, in order to help us expand the Three Rivers Talking Newspaper community, following a tough period during the Covid pandemic.

The Simpson fund supports grass root organisations primarily to provide support to older people over the age of 70 years and to those groups supporting the advancement of education, the protection of good health both mental and physical and the relief of poverty and sickness in Suffolk.

The fund was established in memory of Miss Rosemary Jill Simpson and her younger brother David.  In partnership with their solicitor Jonathan Long at Ashton Legal, Suffolk Community Foundation has created a fund that interprets the passion and focus of both Jill and her brother David during their lifetime and seeks to ensure that their legacy will live on and continue to support good causes that they loved for many generations to come.

We are most grateful to the Fund and also to the wonderful staff at Suffolk Community Foundation for helping us secure this important lifeline.   And we are committed to ensuring that all funding will be used exclusively for the improvement and expansion of Three Rivers TN and the service we deliver to our listeners and the local community.


Celebratory Afternoon Tea Party

On Saturday, 11 September 2021, volunteers, listeners and friends of Three Rivers Talking Newspaper met to celebrate their move from Bungay Honeypot Centre to the smart new studio at Bungay Community Centre.  Scroll down to see a selection of pictures.

Emma Welton, Chair, praised the way Three Rivers readers and technical officers had adapted to remote recording from home during the first lockdown, thus keeping blind and visually impaired listeners in touch with local news as much as possible.

Above all, the celebratory afternoon tea was a chance for everyone involved with our talking newspaper to meet up for a long awaited chat over tea, sandwiches, scones and yummy cakes.

Huge thanks go to everyone involved and especially to Maisebrooke Farm in Shipmeadow, who kindly donated a very generous hamper full of delicious local goodies as a raffle prize.   The raffle raised £130 for Three Rivers and this will be spent on the purchase of new boomboxes for our listeners.


Getting Ready
Maisebrook Farm hamper
So many goodies!
Welcome from Emma
Shy Alan!


Our First Day in New Studio

Helen, Robin, Vaughan, Emma & Charmian. Photo taken by Alan

Well, it felt like our first day at a new school!   Not only was June 3rd 2021 our first day back in the studio following lockdown – it was also our first day in the  NEW studio.   We’re delighted to say that we’ve now settled into our new home at the brand new Bungay Community Centre.

Huge thanks to Martin for ensuring a seamless transfer.

Hurray! We’re Sending Out USBs/Pouches Again

We’re delighted to announce that we’ve now found a way of safely duplicating and despatching our recordings via pouch/USB sticks, so we resumed sending out pouches on 19 February 2021.

However, we do advise listeners to wash or sanitise hands after handling the pouches/USB sticks.  This is particularly important to avoid any risk posed by the new strains of Coronavirus. 

NB: you can also access our recordings in a variety of other ways, see below.

How to Listen Online
You can listen to our latest weekly recording from the Beccles and Bungay Journal here: Beccles & Bungay Journal . Alternatively, you can also listen to it at the BWBF website here (and in their app) and at My Talking Newspaper here .

It’s also available on Alexa by enabling the skill ‘My Talking Newspaper’ and saying ‘Alexa, open my talking newspaper’; ‘Alexa, play Three Rivers Talking Newspaper’.

And, if you don’t have access to the internet, it’s available by phone on 0330 22 33 452 (follow the prompts). Lo call rates apply.

The latest Let’s Talk recording is here: Let’s Talk

and our Valley Sounds magazine here: Valley Sounds