A regional daily has become the only newspaper of its kind in England to feature a paywall on its website.
The Northern Echo has announced the move which will see readers given free access to 10 articles per month before being asked to register with the site.
At this point, a further 10 articles will be available without charge before triggering a £1 per week fee.
It is understood Newsquest will monitor how the new trial is received at the Darlington-based Echo, which launched the paywall on Tuesday, before it considers introducing it to further titles.
The last English regional daily to experiment with a paywall was the Express & Star, Wolverhampton, which scrapped the trial after nine months in January 2012.
Between November 2009 and March 2010, Johnston Press trialled a £5 subscription charge on some of its weekly titles’ websites in a scheme which was described as a “disaster” by a source at one of the newspapers affected.
For £1 a week, visitors to the Echo’s website will receive unlimited website access, the Echo’s iOS and android app, daily email headline alerts and full local history archive access.
A combined print and digital ‘EchoPLUS’ package will also be available for £3.47 per week.
He wrote: “Today, the media industry is embroiled in another technological revolution, with people consuming information in a variety of ways, thanks to the internet.
“The modern Northern Echo is much more than just a newspaper and now it is easier to access our information and unrivalled local journalism wherever and whenever you want it.
“Quality journalism costs money to produce but we have made it great value with a combination of print and online packages from just £1 per week.”