Two weekly newspapers which cover the same town are set to be merged together next week after regional publisher Johnston Press sold two titles to an independent publisher.
The Selby Times and Selby Post are now set to be merged together to create one weekly newspaper from next Thursday, which will be known as the Selby Times & Post.
Staff who worked for the Johnston Press titles which have been sold did not transfer to Chronicle Publications and have been given other roles within South Yorkshire Newspapers, according to a story on JP’s internal newsletter The Word, which has been seen by HTFP.
These include content editor Chris Page, who has worked for 35 years at the Selby Times.
The merger of the titles has been confirmed in a statement by Chronicle Publications, which said the Times & Post would have a cover price of 50p, lower than the 70p charged by JP for the Selby Times.
The company said the Goole Courier would continue to be published as a standalone title.
Chronicle Publications director Mark Dunkerley said: “We are really delighted with this acquisition. The Selby Times and Goole Courier titles fit perfectly in the geography of titles we already publish and bring additional strong brands into our newspaper portfolio.
“As well as providing excellent opportunities for advertisers in their own right, with our ownership the titles will also offer great new selling platforms when paired with our other title, the Goole Times.
“As a company we are very keen to expand into new markets wherever possible and see this acquisition as an outstanding growth opportunity.
“We are pleased to be in a position to continue to expand in this way, even in the current tough economic climate.”
Selby Times content editor Chris Page wrote a farewell leader in this week’s paper about leaving the title.
He wrote: “Please always support your local press. As I sign off this last leader column, thank you one and all.
“Good contacts have become even greater friends on a patch I’ve been proud and privileged to cover for so long.”
Chris and other staff from the sold titles will take on new roles for JP titles based at Sunny Bar in Doncaster, which include the Doncaster Free Press.
In The Word article, SYN editor-in-chief Graeme Huston said: “Chris and the team are very welcome. Although they are no strangers to the Sunny Bar office, it will be good to have them based here full time to help with our plans to develop our Doncaster-based newspapers and websites.”
Johnston Press declined to comment on the sale.