Welcome to The Raikes Journal - the return of community news
Welcome to theraikesjournal.co.uk - a platform for championing news of interest to the business community of Gloucestershire and for flying the flag of the county.
The Raikes Journal exists to share news and stories from that community and those other areas of county life which really matter to it - from its charities (there are 2,000-plus of them!) and its training and education providers (and maybe even a little bit of sport).
It is pro-Gloucestershire, written by journalists, editorially driven, rooted in the county and community minded. Its money runs through the Gloucestershire Credit Union, its website is hosted here at Fasthosts, its phones are powered by Ecotalk. Its lead content strives to be original. If you see it anywhere else, perhaps they have been ‘inspired’ by our work.
“Its aim is to champion the business community, the work of the charity and voluntary sectors, the universities, colleges, and training providers - to cover the news they want covered that does not get covered, the stories they would like to know about and those it has no idea exist,” said Andrew Merrell (that's him picture above), the founder and editor of theraikesjournal.co.uk who has spent two decades reporting on the county and many more besides.
Word will be spread on social media every day through a contacts book already 10,000-strong - via Linkedin, Twitter and Facebook.
“It is no secret that all of the sectors above – and more besides - are now in uncharted water thanks to the coranavirus pandemic and all of them are vital to our future wellbeing and quality of life here in the county.
“Our opening few days will see us not go for traditional news leads – but for a series of big interviews with leaders from those key sectors asking them how it has been and what their next moves is as we show that Gloucestershire is a dynamic county with a clear plan. And it really is.”
He added: “We know an awful lot about the business community here in Gloucestershire, more than most we can think of, and two things have struck us – that we don’t know enough, and the more we learn the more we realise that most of its deeds and stories go unreported.
“But we don’t just want to tell them ourselves. We want theraikesjournal.co.uk to be a platform for the views and comments of all of the above.
“We want first-person articles from businesses, charity leaders and information from thoseresponsible for our education and training.
“Sports clubs should also take note. When the whistles are eventually allowed to sound to mark a return to combat post-pandemic we are inviting clubs at all levels to send in their reports, releases and match reports and we will publish them.
“It is an experiment and we see the benefits of them getting in front of businesses for sponsorship, leadership and support. The rest is up to them.
"We’ll also take a look at the festivals - from art to music, and even a bit of that other big annual event in Prestbury.”
With your help, and unrivalled knowledge and contacts garnered from two decades paddling the business connections in this county, the magic of friendships and partnerships, we plan to gather and drop these ingredients into the vessel that is the TheRaikesJournal.co.uk and raise it high in celebration of Gloucestershire (think of it as a kind of on-line version of the Severn Cross flag) - and to make it stronger as it embarks on shaping a new, post-lockdown world.
Good luck out there - and please, please, use this platform, feedback to us on how it can get better, tell us the stories, share them, help us raise the Severn Cross high - and then higher still. There is no limit.
Follow us on Twitter (@RaikesJournal), LinkedIn via Andrew Merrell's page, Facebook @theraikesjournal and we intend to dabble in a little Instagram too from time to time (theraikesjournal). Use #raikesjournal.