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Paid-for weeklies switch to annual ABC reports

Most paid-for weeklies have switched their sales figures to annual reporting, the latest report shows.

The figures released today by the Audit Bureau of Circulations contains data for just 50 paid-for weeklies, with the rest of the weekly figures in the report relating to free titles.

The body previously said all 754 regional publications must report on a six-month basis but has now given papers the option of reporting annually, which 65pc have chosen to do.

It means their figures will be released next February along with those for a handful of daily titles who have also opted for annual reporting.

In today’s figures, which cover the first half of 2013, just two paid-for weeklies reported a sales increase.

These were the Maidenhead Advertiser, which is 74pc paid-for and had an increase of 9.4pc to 19,515, while the Gravesend and Dartford Messenger saw its sales increase 0.9pc to 5,147.

Among the worst-perfoming of the weekly paid-for titles was the Herne Bay Gazette with a fall in circulation of of 14.3pc, the Uttoxeter Post and Times at 14.5pc and the Welwyn Hatfield Times with a decrease of 13.8pc.

In Scotland, only four weekly titles were included in the latest ABC figures, including the free Inverness Scene with an increase of 7.4pc.

In Wales, all seven weekly titles to report their sales figures had a fall in circulation, including the paid-for Denbighshire Free Press at 6.9pc and the paid-for County Times and Express with a fall of 6.8pc.

The best performing free titles were The Star in Devon which increased by 23.6pc and the Diss Mercury with an increase of 20.4pc.

Among the worst falls of the free weeklies was the Eckington Leader which saw its circulation fall 53pc, the Sheffield Weekly Gazette at 47.7pc and the KM Extra titles in Kent, which saw falls in circulation of between nine and 64pc.

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  • August 29, 2013 at 3:42 pm

    Why switch to annual reporting? Aren’t up-to-date figures particularly important at a time like this, when some papers are losing circulation rapidly, but others are increasing theirs?

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