Unless you’ve been living in a biscuit barrel for the past week and a half, you’ll know that the Prime Minister’s long-awaited speech about EU membership has been dominating the headlines. What better story for me to cover for my assessment?
I plan to focus my story on Cornwall’s political views as to whether or not the UK should remain in Europe. So far, I’ve secured interviews with Mairi Hayworth from UKIP’s Falmouth and Truro branch, MEP for the South West (and Gibraltar), Julie Girling, Stephen Gilbert, MP for St Austell and Newquay; and Richard Snell, manager of the Business and Innovation Centre at Tremough.
You may find what I’m about to tell you very boring, but I’m especially proud that I’ve managed to fit all of these interviews into one day – something I actually found really useful and plan to do again as it enabled me to bounce what one person had said off the others, sparking debate. Here was my schedule for the day:
09:30 Phono with Julie Girling
10:30 Interview Richard Snell at the Innovation Centre in Penryn
11:00 Time for a quick law lecture
2:00 Interview Mairi Hayworth in Falmouth
5:30 Dash off to St Austell to meet Stephen Gilbert
How have other news outlets covered the story?
Where do I start? Other news organisations have pretty much covered every angle imaginable, from what leaving the EU would mean for the UK, to why it’s crucial we should leave.
- The Independent, for example, talks about the consequences of saying bye-bye to Brussels.
- the BBC asks people if the UK should turn its back on Europe.
- There are stories asking if the UK can afford to leave the EU, while this one from The Telegraph focuses on the Chancellor’s attack on Deputy PM, Nick Clegg.
- And my favourite is a story by CNBC about a study which claims the French want ‘Les Rosbifs’ to leave the Union. Brilliant.
Producing the story
So as you can see, there’s no shortage of reading material exploring every aspect of Mr Cameron’s speech, or what implications leaving (or staying in) the EU will have on the UK, but I need to move my story forward in a way that’s interesting, informative and appeals to my target audience. Here’s how I plan to do this:
- I’ll ask how local politicians feel about the possiblity that the British public will have their first referendum on EU membership in 40 years? Are they for or against? And what would it mean for Cornwall?
- I’ll look into what help Cornwall gets from the EU (in the form of Convergence funding, money from the European Social Fund, etc), and ask those in favour of leaving what the county would do without this cash.
- This will be a political piece, so (due to time restrictions) I won’t be recording Vox Pops or interviewing members of the public, but it’d like to hear what a local who’s directly benefited from EU funding has to say about the subject.