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Death of an icon results in two supplements for Welsh weeklies.

A double supplement venture scored a hit as two of Northcliffe Media’s West Wales weeklies published tributes to Welsh rugby legend and broadcaster Ray Gravell.

The death of the icon stunned the nation and the weeklies’ treatment of the hero was well-received in the local community.

Carmarthen Journal and Llanelli Star editor Robert Lloyd said: “His funeral, attended by nearly 10,000 at Llanelli’s world famous Stradey Park, was the nearest Wales will ever come to staging a ‘state funeral’ for one of its heroes.

“We reacted to the death by publishing a 16-page supplement honouring Ray in both the Carmarthen Journal and the Llanelli Star. It was called Yma o Hyd – Here forever, the title of a Dafydd Iwan folk song which was one of Gravell’s favourites.

“The funeral the following week coincided with publication day for the Llanelli Star, so we paid tribute with a special page one and two inside pages on the day’s events.

“The following week, we ran another double page spread in the Journal on the funeral and weighed in with a 16-page supplement, simply titled ‘Grav’ in the Star.

“It was all done with dignity and won us plaudits galore from the local community.”

Early indications are that the first supplement helped chalk up our best sales figures since March 2006. The second supplement is expected to perform just as well.

Robert added: “It was a story none of us in a small team in West Wales wanted to write – many of us were close personal friends of ‘Grav’ – but I think we did the man proud.”