Local newspaper publisher Sir Ray Tindle has unveiled three new weekly titles in North London with a fourth on the way.
The Edmonton Herald, Winchmore Hill Herald and East Barnet Advertiser will focus on small areas within the North London patch already served by larger papers in Sir Ray’s 230-strong stable.
The project, unveiled at a press conference this morning, has been overseen by staff at the Tindle-owned Enfield Gazette and Advertiser and is designed to replace revenues lost as a result of the recession by offering a advertisers a cheaper, more localised service.
The publisher, who has now launched 15 new titles since the start of the downturn, is billing the launch as further proof of his faith both in print and in hyperlocalism.
Said Sir Ray: “The situation facing us here in Enfield was the same as many other newspapers have faced over the last 18 or 24 months. It was not the fault of the staff in any way.
“We put a plan to the executives and then to the full staff assembled here in this room. We said. “Why not try to replace the lost revenue by creating a new stream of income from new papers?”
“By the end of this month of March, Tindle Newspapers will have bought or launched 15 titles since this recession started. We totally believe in the future of the printed local newspaper – we believe in it 100pc.
“Readers want to see their very local news and reports of their activities in print and they want it in their local paper where all their neighbours will see it too. So newspapers will always be the leading medium in the communities in this country.”
He added: “There are 1,000 small weekly local papers which have survived this recession so far and will come through with flying colours and good profits.
“This country will continue to be covered by local newspapers, well-tailored to their communities. Many of mine are over 150 years of age and scores of them are over 100. One is over 200.
“They have lived through two World Wars and at least six recessions and they will live for ever. We believe there’s room for more.
“We have the right people to do it as the staff here at Enfield have demonstrated so clearly today.”
mark webb (05/03/2010 12:22:51)
How refreshing.As our independent local paper (Cleethorpes Chronicle), It is as clear as it ever was that printed local newspapers have a long future ahead of them. The internet is a remarkable tool, however if you tell a 15yr old their picture is on the internet he will probably tell you he put it there, but tell him his picture is in the local paper and he will go out and buy three copies and tell all his friends to do the same. Even now, The internet just can’t do what a good local paper, committed to the area it serves does. Pages of well edited local news and events and hundreds of local names and faces all pulled together by professional journalists and editors in a remarkably easy to access page turning format.
All this works if you are happy to work hard for fair margins. Quality news with affordable and effective advertising? Whatever next?!
All Subbed Out (05/03/2010 13:17:33)
Couldn’t agree more, Mr Webb. A dedicated and comprehensive local newspaper is inclusive of the local community in a way that websites – where the general aim of users is to search for very specific information and exclude all else – can never be. Browsing through a good local newspaper – in which ‘all human life is there’ – can be informative, instructional, inspiring and formative of better understanding of the community around us. What a pity most major national groups really don’t undestand this, and have cut staffing and resource to the point where most local titles are no longer papers of record. Good luck, Sir Ray. I’m sure your group’s not 100 per cent perfect and also faces hard business decisions from time to time, but I can’t help noticing far more positive and innovative news surrounding your titles than all the other major groups.
Mike Phelan (05/03/2010 16:36:34)
Congratulations to Sir Ray Tindle and Tindle Newspapers for this innovative decision. The Tindle group specialises in strong, dedicated local titles – and it produces great local newspapers which maintain respect and loyal following in their local communities. During the last year Tindle has reported great success with its online titles and a bonus for its entire staff. Sir Ray Tindle is evidently a man who knows what makes newspapers tick and he appears to be leading his group to victory on all fronts. Some of the other ‘major players’ in the newspaper world might like to take note and get back to basics to produce the kind of newspapers of which Sir Ray Tindle and his team should feel justly proud.