By Jemma Bufton

Who even buys newspapers anymore?

A phrase we have probably all heard at some point or another, followed by “they put everything online anyway.” As an aspiring journalist, I myself have fallen into this trap – it shames me to say that, until the beginning of this week, I had never purchased a newspaper.

I started as 'the work experience girl' last Monday, arriving at the Worcester News newsroom ready to make endless cups of tea and maybe be promoted to shredding and filing by the end of the week. What I actually experienced here this week was closer to my wildest imaginings. I was welcomed into the team like I was already one of their talented and hardworking reporters.

I pitched my first idea and to my complete surprise I was given the freedom to investigate it and write it up. The following day I was at the shop at 6am to buy my first ever newspaper. When I got home and thumbed through the silky pages, my heart stopped, there it was, my story, my photographs, my name in the Worcester News.

I felt nothing short of pure elation, I was so proud, the story staring back at me was about a brilliant scheme that feeds families in need at my local community centre.

Local newspapers really are at the heart of the community. Amazing reporters work tirelessly to bring all the best bits of Worcester together in one place and to highlight the improvements that need to be made to make all our lives better.

This week I have written about charities, foodbanks, infrastructure, crime and littering. I have interviewed and photographed the Mayor of Worcester. I have sat in magistrates court and listened to cases unravelling. I have spoken to families, children, mothers, fathers, volunteers, press officers, the police and local councillors. I have experienced first-hand almost every aspect of the human condition and I couldn’t be more grateful. Everyone has a story and I am honoured to be one of the people that gets to listen and retell that story to our readers.

As my final day drew to a close, I couldn’t help but feel bereft – I have become enchanted by the hustle and bustle of local journalism and developed an insatiable need for finding news wherever I go.

One thing for certain: I will never question the relevance of the local newspaper again.