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New look for weekly paper after 203 years

More than 200 years after its first edition went to press, a regional weekly paper has relaunched with a brand new look.

The Carmarthen Journal – thought to be the oldest newspaper in Wales – has revamped its design and introduced three new supplements in a bid to improve coverage of the area.

And bosses hope to boost online traffic with messages pushing readers to check out the website or get involved via social media on almost every page.

Journal editor Jonathan Roberts said the relaunch come ahead of the paper’s 203rd anniversary in March.

“The Carmarthen Journal is Wales’ oldest newspaper, and it remains an integral part of the community in West Wales as a trusted source of news and information,” he said.

“It wasn’t a poor product by any means, but we felt we could do more. So we asked ourselves a pretty fundamental question from the outset: what do our readers want to read?

“It sounds simple, but it sparked plenty of ideas, which culminated in the development of a much improved newspaper.”

The front page of the new-look Camarthen Journal

As well as the three new sections, he said, they had added more news, sport and features and increased pagination by 25pc.

“The response has been overwhelmingly positive, both from readers and advertisers,” he added.

“This was a great team effort, and demonstrates our commitment as a business to local newspapers.”

Among the new supplements is Journal Local, a 24-page insert with extra community news stories dedicated to each of the paper’s six editions.

An eight-page leisure guide called Journal Live! has also been created, featuring celebrity columnists, news and opinions on the local arts and culture scene, food and drink, and days and nights out across Camarthenshire, Pembrokeshire and Ceredigion.

The third new section, entitled Journal Country Life, replaces the old Farming section and features eight pages of rural-based news such as agricultural events, fishing, walking and gardening.

The paper is also offering readers the chance to win a three-night trip to New York in celebration of the landmark occasion.

The previous community news section (left) and the front page of the new Journal Local supplement for community news


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  • January 28, 2013 at 11:30 am

    Would it not be appropriate to include information on who publishes the Carmarthen Journal, what the circulation is, the number of pages etc – even the cover price? Is it a broadsheet or a tabloid?
    It looks good, although I am sure some of the usual HTFP whingers will disagree!
    Well done to everyone involved. I hope the hard work pays off.

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  • January 28, 2013 at 3:39 pm

    Being a bit picky, but I’m sure the North Wales Chronicle (from Gwynedd/Anglesey area), celebrated 200 years back in 2009?

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  • January 28, 2013 at 5:18 pm

    The sisters don’t look very shocked in that picture. In fact they seem to be celebrating.

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