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Sale gets DTI approval

Department of Trade and Industry officials have approved the transfer from Mortons Media Ltd to Johnston Press plc of five local newspaper titles and their related assets.

The formal transfer took place yesterday.

The titles include the Horncastle News (including the Coningsby and Tattershall News edition), The Louth Leader, The Mablethorpe, Sutton & Alford Leader, the Skegness News, and the Market Rasen Mail.

Competition and Consumer Affairs Minister Dr Howells was satisfied that the paid-for circulation of each of the titles being transferred was below 50,000 copies per day of publication and cleared the deal without referring it to the Competition Commission.

Dr Howells also decided that, as the market may change over time,the duration of his consent should be limited to one year, or such longer time as he may agree.

All publishing staff from Lincolnshire Independent Newspapers – which runs the newspaper arm of Mortons – will be transferred to Johnston, and Mortons Print Ltd will retain the print contract for the papers.

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