To commemorate the outbreak of war on 4th August 1914 the Macclesfield Talking Newspaper for the Blind has produced a special edition of its weekly audio version of the Macclesfield Express, which is sent out to nearly 200 visually impaired listeners each week. 

The special recording is an abridged version of the 1st and 8th August editions of the Macclesfield Courier and Herald, a predecessor of the Macclesfield Express.  The Courier was very different in appearance and content from today’s newspaper.  It was a broadsheet, similar in size to the Daily Telegraph; the front page was a classified advertisement section; it covered national and international affairs as well as local news.

In addition to the rumblings of war in Europe, the big stories at the beginning of August 1914 were a woman arrested for endangering life by riding her motor-cycle and sidecar at 8mph down Chestergate, a baby show at The Stanley Hall, a runaway horse being stopped by a brave policeman, the mobilisation of the Bollington Territorials, and Shackleton’s expedition to the Antarctic.

The advertisements included some familiar names such as Arighi-Bianchi, J J Cookson, Gorton & Wilson, and C A Day.  “Daisy Doodad’s Dial” was showing at the cinema on Buxton Road and there was a ladies v veterans cricket match at the Victoria Road ground where the men had to bat left-handed and field with the left hand only.  They still won - just!

To raise much needed funds, the Talking Newspaper has made CD copies of this special recording which runs for around 70 minutes.

CDs are available, for a minimum donation of £5, from the Macclesfield Eye Society Resource Centre on Queen Victoria Street (opposite ALDI).
Registered Charity Number 505128
Some of our volunteers making the WW1 recordings ...
Readers Peter, Liz, Elizabeth, John and Cath
Lynn and Colin, TN's Editor and Chairman
Sound technicians Forbes and Alan