Speaker Hoyle hails Jill Dando News as he becomes latest patron (By Evie, 13)

Speaker Hoyle hails Jill Dando News as he becomes latest patron (By Evie, 13)

By Evie, 13, Jill Dando News 

The Speaker of the House of Commons has hailed Jill Dando and her good news legacy saying she will never be forgotten.

Watch here https://youtu.be/6zDvlIUwzSE?si=dNigAOH9UdRCASWB

He was speaking to Evie, 13, shortly after news was announced that he would become the latest patron of Jill Dando News.

Sir Lindsay Hoyle had met students from the good news project in Westminster.

He said: “What a wonderful day to remember Jill Dando and what a legacy she has left. The Jill Dando young people’s news team, bringing good news, news that we all want to hear and see. 

“We will not forget Jill Dando. Inspirational woman, inspirational person who will always be remembered.”

Jill was 37 when she was killed on her doorstep on 26th April 1999 - but her legacy continues to shine brightly through the training of hundreds of young journalists.

The timely Jill Dando News was launched in 2017 out of Jill’s former school, Worle Academy in Weston-super-Mare, Somerset, after students at nearby Priory Academy - also part of The Priory Learning Trust - sowed the seeds of the groundbreaking project.  

Expanding ever since, it now benefits hundreds of children aged 7 to 18 in spreading good, ethical news across Somerset and as far reaching as Africa, a continent Jill had a big heart for. 

Now Mr Speaker has become the latest patron of the project as more and more people remember the incredible life and expanding legacy of Jill.

Some 70 selected Jill Dando Journalists headed to the House of Commons to be hosted by Mr Speaker and guests.

During an interview with the reporters in February, he said: “I loved meeting the Jill Dando News reporters - their project of spreading positivity, good news and kindness is a vital message for our times.

“I can still remember the utter shock we felt when that terrible news broke 25 years ago. However, even death could not extinguish that flame of positivity and kindness that the children are shining so brightly in memory of Jill.

“She is living on - through their positive stories and brilliant kindness and character - one story at a time.

“ So, I want to say A BIG THANK YOU to every single one of the hundreds of Jill Dando News journalists who have been through this fabulous project in Jill’s memory, since 2017.

“They have done the memory - and legacy - of Jill Dando proud and are instilling a culture of character, kindness, positivity, resilience, respect, and honesty in this generation - and future generations. So, a massive well done to you all.”

Wearing ‘Jill Dando News’ jackets and armed with pens and iPads, the children interview people from prime ministers to NASA astronauts.

It trains up real-life journalists and brilliant people of the future to find, write and post positive good news stories, with training by professional journalists including Nigel Dando, Fiona Bruce and others from BBC, ITV and Sky News. 

Their positive stories are posted to the Good News Post online newspaperwww.goodnewspost.co.uk, and then to the wider Media.

The fast-expanding project has been backed by two Prime Ministers, Mr Speaker, Sir Richard Branson, Sir Cliff Richard and a host of other world figures in a world of bad news and rocketing mental health issues.

At the event in Westminster 7 Jill Dando Journalists made speeches about Jill Dando and her legacy. They spoke about the style of Jill and her positivity, enthusiasm, authenticity, humility, kindness, empathy, and ambition to become the 'smiling face of Britain'.

Weston-super-Mare MP John Penrose also made a speech alongside MP Alex Davies-Jones.

Nigel Dando and Mr Speaker then cut a Jill Dando News celebration coffee and walnut cake baked by Revo Kitchen & Terrace based on the seafront of Jill’s home town of Weston-super-Mare. 

The day was capped off when Danni the Donkey from the Grand Pier posed for pictured and gave out sticks of rock from Weston-super-Mare outside the House of Commons before students headed back home.

Jill Dando News reporters made history to became the first journalists in the world to interview the then new Prime Minister Boris Johnson in August 2019 and have interviewed hundreds of people and written countless positive good news stories.

Olivia Finch, 19, was the first ever Jill Dando News reporter then aged 12 at Worle Academy, and is now studying to be a doctor at Bristol University.

Olivia said: “Jill inspired us from day one with her life. Jill Dando News is a fitting, expanding legacy for Jill who really was ‘the smiling face of Britain.”

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