The editor of a weekly newspaper closed down six months a go has bounced back with the launch of a new county-wide magazine.
The NeneQuirer, named for the river that flows through Northamptonshire, will cover news, culture and sport across the county.
It will be free to pick up at various high footfall areas around the county and in many local independent businesses.
Steve, who began working on the project after the Herald & Post’s closure, said: “Big media has not served Northamptonshire well over the years. The major local newspaper publishers have reduced or removed their offer to the extent that a network of towns that used to receive a daily paper and at least one weekly free now only have one weekly paid-for in the market place.
“People tend to think this is some kind of inevitable dinosaur moment for print publications, but on the inside of these big companies the strategies are all about what is the easiest way to capture the most revenue for the least effort.
“The all-round service people get from a typical local newspaper has changed so dramatically in recent years: adverts booked via call centres, buzzfeed style generic clickbait on the websites, editors based in towns 25 miles away – the word local hardly seems appropriate. And then to have your paper taken away – not because the local economy cannot support it but because the internal economy of the publisher cannot support it – it’s the final insult.”
Steve has described the magazine as the beginnings of Northamptonshire’s own ‘slow news’ movement – saying it will feature long, thoughtful articles and columns about county people and organisations and what they are getting up to.
He added: “It feels important now to have something in the community that is locally owned and edited. I don’t need to make a fortune, I just need to make a living so I’m going to have a go.
“Businesses that book ads with us will have someone on the other end of the phone who knows that they are in Abington, Northampton, not Abingdon, Oxford. People who read our stories will be reading stories written by or about county people, not something about Milton Keynes ‘re-purposed’ by a content manager in another county.”
Prior to his time at the Herald & Post, Steve worked at the Northampton Chronicle & Echo, where he held various roles including news editor and night editor.