A new ‘national’ newspaper for the North of England and South-West Scotland will be launched by an independent regional publisher and the Press Association later this month.
The CN Group has unveiled ’24 – The North’s National’, a 40-page tabloid which will aim to provide a “distinctly Northern perspective” to the nation’s biggest news stories.
Priced at 40p and on sale from 20 June, 24 will target disenfranchised readers of national newspapers looking for a cheaper alternative to what CN has termed “London-centric titles”.
Its circulation area will stretch from Preston in the south to Lockerbie in the north, and Workington in the west to Hexham in the east – roughly corresponding with the patch where the group’s regional titles are currently sold.
PA will provide around 95pc of 24’s content including news, lifestyle, features, celebrity gossip and puzzles.
The Monday to Friday newspaper’s sports section will focus on major teams from cities in the North of England and Scotland – including Glasgow, Liverpool, Manchester and Newcastle.
Two other new jobs will be created as a result of the launch, although no further appointments have yet been made.
Daily contributions will be made by local columnists to the venture, while a new 24 national news section will also be introduced across the group’s existing regional news websites – although the new paper will not have its own standalone site.
The 24 editorial team will have access to news lists from across the group’s titles – which includes regional dailies the Carlisle News & Star and the North West Evening Mail – meaning content could be shared between the titles.
Miller Hogg, CN Group chief executive, said: “24 will fill a large gap in the regional market by providing a northern take on the national headlines. e see our purpose as serving the communities in which we operate, so it follows that CN Group should produce a national newspaper tailored to our patch.
“We know our customers well and have the capacity to print, publish and distribute a new paper for the local market.
“Our collaboration with PA will ensure our readers receive only the highest-quality journalism which delivers the facts devoid of spin, to help readers formulate their own views on the UK’s biggest headlines.”
Tony Watson, managing director of the Press Association, added: “We will work closely with the editorial team at 24 to provide a package of the news and content of most interest to its readers
” We have an exciting summer ahead, packed full of major political and sporting events, and we aim to provide a variety of content and services to sharpen the appeal of this vibrant new publication.”
National advertising for 24 will be managed by Mediaforce, the UK’s largest independent sales house.
CN Group editorial director David Helliwell said: “After so much doom and gloom for the industry this is an exciting new development.
“We believe we have the right package of content and design, spiced with a distinctly northern flavour, to provide a viable alternative in the national newspaper market.”