It's a mish-mash of reports: Interesting Talks - 'Coconuts to coir- the history of the product', listings of Community Courses - from Aerobics to Yoga, with all things wacky in between. Toss a few plucky pensioners, tragic toddlers, fund raising coffee mornings, used cars and amateur sport into the mix and we have local news. I must also mention the Presentation of the Giant Cheque as there is always a picture of a giant cheque being handed over. Without fail.
The bizarre, the banal and the humdrum, that's the minutiae of life that finds its place in the pages of the weekly newspaper. What wouldn't merit a mention on a national scale is writ large here.
Our local 'rag': The County Times is no exception and declares itself 'Proud to be Local' above the masthead. It covers a large part of mid-Wales - Powys, and slips across the border into Shropshire here and there. It's an area so large that one would think it could sustain a publication as thick as a telephone directory, stuffed with news and comment. But no, it's a slender little paper - its pages plumped up I think by the duplication of some ads and columns which are printed both in English and in Welsh. I suppose if your 'turf' is home to more sheep than people this paucity of news is hardly suprising. It relays the sort of snippets you'd hear if you leaned over a gate and gossiped with your farming neighbour for half an hour. The price of sheep, petty crime and - as everywhere - house prices.
The front page this week featured a petition against plans to convert an old toilet block into a food outlet and the truly tragic story of a local man crushed to death when his tractor overturned. (Farm man died 'doing the work he loved'.) Our MP - Lembit Opik is relegated to page 2 where he wholeheartedly supports an exhibition of geology. In the adjacent column we learn that 50% of those who voted in a County Times poll believe Mr Opik to be right in thinking that the world's population will be wiped out by an asteroid one day. I suppose that could be earth shattering information.