The founder of a new newspaper focusing on community and human interest stories says she is not aiming to compete with established titles on her patch – and has set her sights on UK-wide expansion.
The Brighton Beezer aims to tell the stories of people on its patch and share their experiences of the city they live in, rather than what is founding editor has termed the “need to know” stories offered by Newsquest-owned daily The Argus and Johnston Press-owned weekly the Brighton & Hove Independent.
Ilana, who moved to Brighton last year, has five editorial staff at the Beezer and hopes to provide a paid platform for recent graduates aiming to get a “foot in the door” in their fledgling journalism careers.
Of the idea behind the Beezer, she told HTFP: “In my area you have a daily local newspaper and when people pick it up it’s out of date because of digital, and I feel local news is better placed online than in print.
“I thought: ‘Is there a way we can still use newsprint for local communities, but in a different way?'”
Ilana added: “I definitely don’t want to be seen as a competitor to [The Argus and the Independent] because what we carry is more of local feel with stories about the community, rather than stories the community needs to know about.
“The way we do advertising is different too because it’s especially designed to look like the rest of the newspaper.”
Ilana hopes in the future to launch similar titles across the UK, and has already earmarked Bristol and Glasgow as two potential cities where she could expand.
She said: “Bristol is similar to Brighton with lots of open-minded people willing to explore things.”
The Beezer is the latest entrant into the Brighton media market which also includes the Argus and the Independent.
There is also the web-only Brighton and Hove News, run by former Argus deputy editor Frank LeDuc, while Worthing Journal editor Paul Holden has also spoken of plans to launch a sister paper in the city.