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Meeting to thrash out London 2012 regional press pool

Sports editors from several regional titles are to attend a meeting next week to thrash out plans for a press pool for next year’s London Olympics.

Only a handful of regional and local papers have so far been allotted press passes, including the Newham Recorder in London, the Manchester Evening News, and The Herald, Glasgow.

The Newspaper Society has been lobbying for additional passes with the aim of setting up a pooled system to cover the whole industry.

Now the NS is to hold a meeting with sports editors and representatives of the British Olympics Association on Monday to discuss the practical arrangements for the pool.

It is not clear how mnay additional passes could be on offer, with estimates putting the figure between 12 and 20.

The NS said today it was “continuing to press for more full accreditation and venue-specific passes for local papers to cover the Games.”

In a recent memorandum to the Culture, Media and Sport Select Committee of MPs, it highlighted the “unique relationship” between local newspapers and the athletes from their community who may be taking part in 2012 and said more passes should be made available to ensure that the games was not a “London-centric” event.

It also said that, for events outside of Olympic Park, regional press should be granted venue-specific passes to be able to cover events in their own locality.