A recently-launched weekly freesheet has generated interest far beyond its patch after balloons bearing its logo were found 200 miles away in France.
The balloons, handed out to mark the launch of the Times of Tunbridge Wells on 4 March, drifted across the Channel and the north of France for five days before being found near the town of Chartres.
They were discovered in the village of Friaize – 75 miles south-west of Paris – by Marine Chiang and her seven-year-old daughter Sarah after landing in a tree in their garden.
Sarah, who turned seven on 28 February, initially thought they were birthday balloons, but after spotting the logo and reading about the new newspaper on our website, Marine contacted HTFP about the find.
She said: “We were surprised to find balloons hanging from the branches (last) Monday, and it was only on Thursday that we managed to get them.
“When we did, it was a new surprise that they came from Tunbridge Wells.”
Marine added: “By searching the internet, it seemed that the inauguration of a new newspaper in Tunbridge Wells was the cause of these balloons.
“Well, it’s a promising start because it is already known in France. Sarah is delighted with this discovery and thinks to repeat the experience, but in reverse.”
The balloons were handed out on 4 March by hawkers distributing the first edition of the Times.
Editorial director Richard Moore told HTFP: “Word of our launch has reached all corners of the United Kingdom, but we didn’t realise it had crossed the Channel too. I’m just baffled as to how they got that far.”