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Swift work after murder verdict boosts sales

A late court verdict over the murders of a young mother, her two daughters and her elderly mother led to a swift response from the local paper – which resulted in as special edition that evening and a 12.8 per cent increase in sales the next day.

Within minutes of the guilty verdict against defendant David Morris being announced at Swansea Crown Court, all staff of the South Wales Evening Post swung into action to run a late edition that day and an early edition the following morning.

The jury announced its verdict at 3.38pm and by 5.15pm a special late edition on the trial was hitting the streets. Seven pages from the day’s normal late edition were stripped and contents replaced with the trial. Key retail outlets were targeted and 1,462 copies of the special late edition were sold.

Reporters and subs then stayed late into the evening to ensure the Post’s coverage could not be beaten the following day.

It was decided to bring out an early edition the next morning to ensure the Post would not be scooped by the nationals.

Eleven news pages were devoted to the murders backed up by a special 12-page supplement on the trial with in-depth background features.

A special 10pm Friday night print went ahead and distribution started on Saturday June 29 at 5.30am, which meant the Post was available alongside the nationals from around 5.45am.

As a result the Saturday sales were up by 6,898 copies compared with the previous Saturday, a rise of 12.8 per cent.

Post editor George Edwards said: “This was a magnificent team effort by everyone involved. What is especially pleasing and very reassuring is that nobody was in the least surprised by the high level of skill and professionalism.”

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