Birmingham student launches hyperlocal site for final year project

A final year undergraduate from Birmingham City University has set up her own hyperlocal news site for Hednesford, in an attempt to build on the local news currently available and offer more stories focused on the community.

Kellie Maddox, who is studying Media and Communication (Journalism), is running Hednesford News on her own at the moment, as part of a final year project inspired by a number of other start-ups within the hyperlocal field over the last couple of years.

In time she hopes to build up a community of reporters and also work on a business plan to monetise the project.

Currently, the site is not-for-profit for its duration as my final year project but in the future, I do hope to make the site more financially sustainable. There are lots of people, much more knowledgeable than me, trying to come up with business models for these kinds of sites and it’d be great, if between us, we could come up with something. For me, I don’t think I’d ever see the site as a money-maker, what’s more important is the quality and range of content I hope to deliver, that is currently not offered by the limited media in our area. Community engagement is one of my main aims because I feel that many people, who have favoured local newspapers for years, are now not being provided with really relevant content specific to their location. I hope this offers me a chance to do just that.

Read the full Q&A with Maddox on’s TNTJ blog.

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