Regional publisher Trinity Mirror has revealed it tried and failed to sell three weekly Midlands titles which have been earmarked for closure.
The company’s Midlands division announced the closure of the Cannock Chase Post, Stafford Post and Sutton Coldfield News on Monday as part of a shake-up set to lead to 45 job losses.
Yesterday the National Union of Journalists urged the publisher to find a buyer for the three free titles as an alternative to shutting them down.
Now Trinity has revealed it tried to do just that but found there was “no appetite” for a deal and the recent unsuccessful bid by the KM Group to buy Northcliffe’s Kent titles had not helped.
A spokesman said: “We conducted discussions with a number of publishers over the potential sale of these titles however there was no appetite for buying them.
“We believe that the recent referral of the Kent Messenger Group’s bid to buy Northcliffe’s Kent titles to the Competition Commission was unhelpful in this regard.”
As well as the closure of the three titles the restructure will also see production and features staff at the company’s Birmingham and Coventry titles merged in a regional hub.
The union said that the only beneficiary of the closure will be Northcliffe Media which has rival papers in the area.
The NUJ will hold an open debate called Crisis in Midlands Journalism to be held on Thursday 8 December at Birmingham Council House.
In a statement on Monday, Trinity Mirror Midlands managing director Steve Anderson-Dixon said the review was vital to ensuring the future of the company’s newspapers and websites in the Midlands.