Peppard News was started in 1994 by Hugh Warwick before he became ordained. His original idea was for a quarterly newspaper that would enhance Peppard’s sense of community, and was Church led although not in competition with the existing Peppard Church Magazine. Both St Michael’s Catholic Church and Peppard Congregational Church were invited to contribute and the newspaper would encompass other activities going on within the parish. He also approached Peppard school and invited them to make regular contributions.
In those days, Peppard News was just four A4 pages and carried a few advertisements to defray some of the costs. The Parochial Parish Council was prepared to underwrite it and both the Congregational Church and the Parish Council also made substantial contributions. It soon expanded to six A4 pages.
In 1997, Peter Longhurst took over the editorship and put his own very personal stamp on Peppard News expanding it yet again, this time to eight pages. He retained the principle of having advertisements as a means to support the costs whilst using the Newsletter as a vehicle for keeping parishioners informed of events and activities within Peppard.
When Peter expressed his desire to retire from his editorship, the late Lord Silsoe made it his mission to ensure that a new editorial team was recruited and ready to take over in September 2005. Under the editorship of Susan Carter, the new team settled into their respective roles and produced their first full edition for Winter 2005, just a few days prior to Lord Silsoe’s untimely death. Their first innovation was to introduce, in the summer of 2006, a colour banner for the front and back pages and by winter 2006, Peppard News had increased to 12 pages.
Susan stood down as Editor in the Summer of 2010 and after a long battle with cancer she finally passed away in October 2011.
Tony Treglown had been one of Peppard News’ distributors for several years and stepped up to the Editorship towards the end of 2010. It was under Tony’s leadership that Peppard News Publications was formed with a brand new constitution and comprising a committee, with Tony as Chairman, and members to govern the publication of Peppard News.
When Tony left the area in the autumn of 2013, the remaining team members, each with their individual skills and roles, decided to continue working together as an Editorial team without any one person having overall responsibility. Rita Hadgkiss was elected Chairman of Peppard News Publications.
The team actively continues to strive to produce an informative and interesting Newsletter for the Parish of Rotherfield Peppard.