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£1m boost from local newspaper companies

More than £1m from Johnston Press and Newsquest in Lancashire is helping save historic newspapers for the future.

Long-gone titles such as the Preston Argus, The Trader and the Morecambe Times have been microfilmed as part of Newsplan 2000 to offer an insight into life in Lancashire from the 1700s to the 1940s.

Preston’s Harris Library can now view vintage editions of The Clarion (1891-1897), Preston Argus (1897-1908), Preston Journal (1742-1753), Preston Journal and Croft’s Lancashire General Advertiser (1807-1812), Preston Review and County Advertiser (1793-1794) and the Preston Sentinel (1821-1822).

Burnley visitors can catch up on events in the town between 1926 and 1942 through copies of The Trader and Morecambe newshounds can read copies of the Morecambe Times (1881-1921).

The preservation of the newspapers has been possible thanks to a grant of £5m from the Heritage Lottery Fund and over £1m from Johnson Press Group and Newsquest Media Group, the publishers of several leading Lancashire papers.

County councillor Marcus Johnstone said: “As a former journalist I am pleased to see this work being done. We often forget that newspapers are often ‘history’s first draft’ and they tell the story in a way no other medium does.”

  • In Lincolnshire, Lincoln library now holds copies of the Boston Gazette, the Louth-based Lincolnshire Halfpenny Echo, Louth Echo and Sleaford Standard on microfilm. They have been added to the comprehensive Lincolnshire Echo archive, which dates back to the paper’s launch in the city in 1893.
  • Visitors to Welwyn Garden City library can see every copy from 1922 to 1928 of the town’s first newspaper, the Welwyn Garden City and Hatfield Pilot.

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