Reviewing a year in which the fire at Weybridge Hospital destroyed their studio, Elmbridge and Runnymede Talking Newspaper paid tribute to the hard work that got them back on their feet.

The fire caused the group’s weekly digest of news for the visually impaired to be stopped for the first time in more than 40 years.

Thanks were made at the group’s AGM, looking back at what chairman Jonathan Fisher described as an “eventful” year.

He thanked Runnymede Borough Council staff and councillors for giving the group its new space in Chertsey, and other charities for their help, advice and donations of equipment.

Rooms were offered and viewed by members at Weybridge Library and the Orchard Centre in Chertsey, and the first recordings were sent out from Chertsey on October 29.

The chairman said volunteer numbers had dropped, with the greatest loss among editors who select articles for inclusion.

Several volunteers have resigned either for health reasons or because the new site is too far to travel, including treasurer of six years Graham Parker who lives in Kingston, and honorary secretary Nicola Maxwell is leaving for family reasons.

Mr Parker was given a certificate of appreciation, a card and a gift from volunteers, and Ms Maxwell was given a card and gift from volunteers.