1 February 2015

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Weekly newspaper goes online-only after 137 years

A London newspaper launched more than 130 years ago has ceased publication as a print product and is now only available as an online edition.

The Enfield Gazette is continuing to come  out on a Thursday but its latest 16-page edition can now only be read online.

The newspaper is part of North London and Herts Newspapers owned by Sir Ray Tindle’s company Tindle Newspapers, which also owns the Enfield Gazette & Advertiser.

Until recently it was a part paid-for, part free title but the digital edition, which can be read here, is completely free-to-view.


The latest edition of the Enfield Gazette - only available online

No-one from Tindle Newspapers has so far responded to requests for a comment on the move.

However HTFP has learned that the change to digital-only publication was made last week.

The Enfield Gazette was launched in 1874 and the companion Advertiser series in 1979.

It is understood that the print edition of the Enfield Advertiser will now be rebranded the Enfield Gazette and Advertiser, altough the Gazette will continue as a standalone digital publication.


  1. Dying breed

    What a shambolic front page!
    Is that supposed to be a joke!

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  2. stunnedandconfused, SarfLondon

    seriously. would any journo in their right mind think was a front page story even for a weekly! best shut up shop now boys and girls.
    If it’s a joke; fair play. You got me.

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  3. Roger Jones, Bedworth Warwickshire

    Design isn’t everything. It’s the content that counts! After all it is a small community newspaper.

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  4. SubberDubberDoo, Desk

    From a should-have-been nib on a defib to a front page splash…
    I wonder if they know that the Framley Examiner is not real?
    All their papers appear to be modelled on this quaint, quirky format which absolutely CANNOT be taken seriously – and people wonder why local papers struggle for respectability and sales.

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  5. Oh Captain, my Captain.

    I suspect it’s a very small team – ie one sub, one reporter and has suffered a lot from cuts etc. But there really is no excuse for such a poor front.

    Sorry to be harsh, but I’ve worked on two small free papers, sometimes with just a part-time reporter in support, and in much quieter patches than Enfield, and I would never dream of putting something like that out.

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  6. Glen

    Ahahahahahaha. Quality isn’t it

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  7. stunnedandconfused, sarfLondon

    Come on folks. It’s a crap story by any normal standards of news. More staff needed methinks but they cost money.

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  8. redundanthack, lancashire

    Come on you miserable lot!
    I think the word defibrillator works well in any headline
    I’m sure we’ve all used it

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  9. gobsmacked, South of Nottingham

    redundanthack has it. None of us have ever before appreciated the beauty of multi-syllable word in a headline, All that basic journo training was wasted. I presume a workie with two weeks experience wrote this one.

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  10. Southbury Road, Shoreditch

    It is a real shame. The Gazette was a quality publication in the late 90s under Aaron Gransby, focusing on serious campaigns and excellent sports coverage (which I produced). Seems to be a (digital) shadow of its former self.

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  11. Former journo, Reading

    With a bit of creativity and digging it could have been a genuine splash focusing on ‘Ambulance cuts forces community to rely on defribrilator for heart attack victims’ or maybe go in on a case study who has been saved by the machine.

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  12. Blustringer

    Dear God. I need a go on their defibrillator after seeing that front page.
    Is that really the biggest thing that’s happened in Enfield?

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  13. Two Pen'orth

    What a stunningly dull exit from print! I wouldn’t give tuppence to read such drivel.
    This is not a publication which deserves any mourning whatsoever – it deserves the oblivion for which it is now headed.
    The same cannot be said about the overwhelming majority of weeklies that continue to set high standards in a backdrop of ever-shrinking staffs with heavier workloads.
    The Gazette’s demise in print is interesting only in as far as it may herald the fate of many other struggling weeklies which deserve better.

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  14. A Man Who Knows

    Erm…hate to piddle on people’s parades, but I think there’s bigger issues with this story than this particular front page.

    Who is responsible – but who will be blamed? That is the question we must ask.

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  15. Dave M, Wilds of Dorset

    This looks like a pretty typical Tindle offering.

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  16. Southbury Road, Shoreditch

    @ Two Pen’orth ‘This is not a publication which deserves any mourning whatsoever’ Bit harsh. The point being it used to be a great title, well up there with the majority of other weeklies.

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  17. Miranda, Dorset

    You don’t necessarily need more staff – I’ve just turned out two editions of our weekly by myself, even subbing some pages too.
    Yes, we do more soft news than the dailies but a defibrillator is a picture caption, not a front! What happened?
    It’s enough to give you a, oh, hang on a tick – hand me that defibrillator…

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  18. Surreyman, Lingfield

    For some of Tindle Group’s truly finest work, just google along to the Oxted County News and associated editions. Truly jaw-dropping stuff!

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  19. John Bull

    Two Pen’orth, I see where you’re coming from, but it is a bit harsh. Newspapers generally have had the lifeblood squeezed from them in the last 20 years. Replace an experienced reporter with a trainee, or inexperienced reporter costing £5,000 less a year. Then, cut staff and don’t replace them. An even bigger saving. In a number of instances, not all, the bosses, not the journalists, but those staring at the account sheets don’t really care about the product they put out. Investment in staff, in the readers newspapers used to be all about serving, could be the way forward and pay dividends. But how many newspapers, daily and weekly, seem to be content to regurgitate council and police press releases? I don’t blame the journalists of today, or at least those coming through in recent years. They’ve never been asked to do any different for the most part. It’s sad when any publication bites the dust, or a daily goes weekly, or to overnight printing, or when editions are lost.

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  20. Southbury Road, shoreditch

    Biggin Hill news, doesn’t support iPad or iPhone…good planning then

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  21. RT, Croydon

    This is a diabolical front page, but give the staff a break and look at the full picture. It’s got a dateline of January 19 and the story – if you read it – says the switch to digital-only took place last week, so presumably this never made it into print. I’m not sure the ‘What a stunningly dull exit from print…’ comment is justified.
    Now put yourself in the shoes of the editorial team at Enfield. They’ve still got an Enfield Advertiser to produce – bizarrely being renamed the Advertiser and Gazette despite the continued existence of the Gazette in digital form.
    Where would you focus your energy and attention? The print edition or some travesty of an e-edition that clearly only exists to keep the numbers up for advertisers?
    I’d be amazed if more than a dozen people ever look at it, and even more amazed if it still exists in a month’s time.
    Don’t blame the staff for putting their resource in the right place in the face of crackpot managerial initiatives. I suspect this was thrown together in five minutes using whatever leftovers were deemed too poor for the surviving print edition.
    (I’ve not seen the front page of the Enfield Advertiser – if that’s equally bad then I take back all of the above!)

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  22. STM

    RT pretty much hits the nail on the head when it omes to the Gazette being filled with stuff that was too poor for the Advertiser, but the truth is actually even worse.

    The fact of the matter is that Sir Ray Tindle is obsessed with “hyper-local” news. It was a couple of years back now that the directive came down from above that the front page of the Gazette was to be filled with this sort of rubbish. Everyone in editorial protested that this wasn’t the way to sell local London newspapers, and the reason the group’s newspapers had been respected in the past was their willingness to publicly challenge local authority decisions and carry out proper investigations. They were ignored.

    This isn’t to dispute that Sir Ray’s tactics may work effectively with his countryside newspapers – but with the Gazette and its sister newspapers, it’s been a disaster. No one wants to work putting together this sort of drivel, so staff leave in their droves and are never replaced, making the task of the remaining few ever harder and less appetising. It’s no coincidence that the front page of the Gazette is, most weeks, written by whatever work experience intern happens to be in the office.

    Some of the posters imply that the staff should be embarrassed by this – and as one who knows the staff, I can tell you that they are. But it’s not their choice. I would imagine that at the moment they’re mostly feeling relief that even fewer people will get to read the excuse for a newspaper it’s become.

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  23. RT, Croydon

    STM, I can well believe it. Presumably that’s why two far stronger stories are hidden on p3 instead.

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  24. Old style hack, Kent

    Never been to Enfield but I’m guessing not a lot happens there if this splash is anything to go by.
    Maybe it’s good that they’ve gone ‘free’ online as I can’t see the residents of Enfield waiting eagerly outside their newsagent to pay 80p or whatever to buy the latest defibrillator blockbuster.
    All that’s missing is an ‘exclusive’ tag.
    PS Next week’s splash is apparently an exciting defibrillator follow-up … it doesn’t work!

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