Your Thurrock is Five!

WHO WOULD have thought it? On September 1st 2008, we launched and five years later, we are still here!

We have published close to 15,000 stories and nearly 5,000 filmed news items. Our readership continues to grow (842,000 page views in 2013 so far). We also have 5,050 followers on twitter.

On July 1st, we launched our second on-line newspaper,

We would like to thank all those who have supported us, especially in the early days and especially Sally Casey and Mike Jones (what is this the Oscars?-Ed)

We would like to think, that, even if we shut tomorrow, if someone in a hundred years time, wanted to find out about life in Thurrock between 2008 and 2013, then they would have a fair idea by looking through our archive.

But thank you for looking in.

And so, in the spirit of looking back, just for a moment, we have put together, ten films from our first weeks in 2008, that throw a little light on Thurrock, five years ago.

1. Charity Fundraiser: Rudy Weeber

Dutchman Rudy Weeber had terminal cancer. But the Chadwell resident was determined to raise as much money for charity as he could.

He was such a lovely man. We interviewed him about his life and how he came to be in Thurrock.

Rudy died in April 2009. We miss him.

2. OTF

We loved the nascent grime and rap scene in Thurrock. It reminded us a bit of punk. People such as Mushley are still around (he hates this video) and we loved G Spots growly voice. We don’t do much of this anymore.

3. Councillor Danny Nicklen

We have always admired the enthusiasm of the young councillors in Thurrock. On all sides. Danny had just been elected and so we caught up with him in Corringham. Danny learned a lot in his four years and developed a great deal. Hope that one day he returns.

4. Cliff Richard comes to Lakeside

Boy is he popular. Don’t think we have seen the likes of it again. They camped out all night, they flew from Scotland. This was also an example of how to put a filmed news item together properly. That is because it was made by Mike Jones.

5. Tattoo John

This was the first Tattoo John film and is well worth another watch. The point was to chronicle his descent into alcoholism. It is a straight piece. We appreciate we may have turned him into a youtube cult but if you look at this, you will see a story that is pertinent today as it was five years ago.

6.Grays Athetic’s Mick Woodward

Always gave good copy. And here was Mick quitting the club and selling it etc etc….The film away at Histon was even better but we could not publish the full version….

7.Chafford Head, Chris Tomlinson

The educational success story of the last half decade has been the senior school in Chafford. In many ways, the ex-professional footballer and headteacher, Chris Tomlinson is the Sir Alex Ferguson of Thurrock education.

8. The funeral of Lance-Corporal Nicky Mason

Aveley man, Nicky died in Helmand province. The village stopped for the day. Serving soldiers and veterans came to pay their respects. A very sad afternoon.

9. Carl Morris

When we started, Labour were in opposition (in Thurrock Council) but spin-meister and former mayor, Carl Morris kept the press releases “slamming the Tories” coming. Probably the architect behind the defection of Terry Hipsey and he probably would have made a very good MP.

10. Debbie White

A long story. Debbie was found not guilty of attacking her neighbour in Chadwell. It was a case that saw her remanded at Holloway, her children in care and her life almost destroyed. After a two week trial at Basildon Crown Court, she was acquitted.

11. Grays Town Centre

Just the camera roaming through Grays Town Centre.

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