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Star's latest bid to get back into print

Community news website the Salford Star is launching its latest bid to secure funding to re-start its print edition.

The magazine published its last print product in autumn 2008 and has been an online only news service since, producing just one magazine as a PDF version in April last year.

Editor Stephen Kingston is now applying for various grants from Salford’s eight ‘community committees’ which seek to fund projects in their local neighbourhoods.

The Star, which is run by volunteers, has submitted applications to three of the committees, for £2,500 and two for £500 respectively, amid claims Salford City Council had previously changed its rules to prevent the magazine receiving money.

A print version of the magazine costs around £7,000 to produce and the remaining half of the money would be collected through advertising, donations and merchandise sales.

Stephen writes: “Before the Salford Star’s first ever issue, East Salford Community Committee provided a grant of around £1,500 towards print costs but when we went back for funding a few years later, i.e. after the magazine had hit the streets, it was a different story.

“Salford Council re-wrote its rules for community spending on ‘publications’, back dated them and decided Salford Star didn’t meet the new ‘criteria’.

“The application was ripped up before the community actually got to see it, in what has become a widely publicised story.

“Last year the budget sub group of East Salford Community Committee formally voted that they wanted to be able to see any future Salford Star applications, so this time we are hopeful that Salford Council won’t intercept the application.”

Sue Lightup, Salford City Council’s strategic director for community, health and social care, said: “We received our first application from a publication for community committee funding in 2007.

“As a result of this we put in place some guidelines for publications so that we can demonstrate fairness and transparency when deciding upon funding applications.

“These are the same guidelines we’re using today and all applications for funding are considered as part of a formal process involving the relevant community committees.”


Bern (25/02/2010 10:25:57)
We all know Salford Council’s ‘guidelines for publications’. If they are critical of the council rip the application up.