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Compact format for weekly broadsheet

The Bucks Free Press has moved to a compact, easier-to-handle format, after 149 years as a broadsheet.

The Newsquest title made the move following requests from readers, who greeted the new-look with excitement at focus groups.

The paper will continue to offer quality news, features and sport supported with new, improved sections.

Sport now runs on the back of the paper, with an average of eight pages, most of the district news areas have been given two pages instead of one, and the education page has returned after an absence of several years.

The paper, first launched in 1856, researched the move through reader surveys and focus groups, as well as producing two test versions of the new-look BFP.

Editor Steve Cohen said: “We are tremendously excited by the change in format.

“We hoped our readers would like the new-look but we were stunned by the enthusiastic way in which they embraced the compact at our three focus groups.

“We had people who had read the Free Press all of their lives telling us they couldn’t wait for the new modern format because it looked so good.”

The Bucks Free Press’ content has remained the same with a large property supplement as well as its popular pull-out leisure section, Freetime.

There are also sport, motors and classified sections as well as the new education page.

The launch took effect from March 4 with a slogan “Easier to use … still packed with news”.

Steve added: “Readers will have seen that we have not compromised the quality of the content at all, and we have improved it in many areas.”