Peninsula News

It is not coincidental that the words “community” and “communication” are similar. A strong community requires good communication. This story tells how one community started a newspaper to meet its communication needs.
The idea of starting a newspaper just for the Woy Woy Peninsula on the NSW Central Coast arose from early meetings of the Peninsula Community Forum.
The community forum was formed of representatives of all significant organisations active on the Peninsula to discuss issues facing the community.
During discussions, it soon became apparent that many individuals and groups were active but were unaware of each other. They also had difficulty letting the community know about their activities.
One participant noted that he was new to the area but, where he came from, the role was served by the local paper.
It became evident that the existing suburban papers were regional, rather than local in nature and did not provide the possibility of a comprehensive local coverage.
In addition to communication needs within the community, a number of important developments were planned for the Peninsula by Gosford Council as well as the private sector. These represented investments of many millions of dollars and had long-term implications for residents’ lifestyle on the Peninsula.
A major deficiency in social infrastructure was identified and the forum encouraged Mark Snell to pursue his idea of establishing a community-based newspaper.
He believed that a newspaper was needed that was a rich information source and provided the community with the opportunity to discuss topical issues. He felt the area was already well served with advertising media and material with an emphasis on entertainment across the Coast but local Peninsula events were not being particularly well covered.
It was with this background that a newspaper association was formed with an aim to provide a newspaper that was conscious of its community development role.