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Radio station in bid to revive regional daily following closure

Chronicle and Revolution 96.2A local radio station has launched an ambitious bid to revive a regional daily newspaper which closed a fortnight ago with the loss of 49 jobs.

The Oldham Chronicle ceased publication on 31 August after its parent company, Hirst, Kidde and Rennie, went into administration.

As reported elsewhere on HTFP, regional publisher Newsquest is looking to fill the void with the launch of a new weekly title the Oldham Times, due to hit the streets next week.

But in a fresh twist, it has today emerged that Oldham-based radio station Revolution 96.2 has launched a bid to bring back the 163-year title.

Oldham fire

The Chronicle’s on-the-day coverage of the Grenfell Tower disaster earlier this summer.

The independent station, which has served the Oldham, Rochdale and Tameside areas since 1999, says it is in “advanced talks” with administrators Paul Flint and Jonathan Marston of KPMG to purchase the newspaper:.

Announcing the closure last month, the adminstrators said that attempts to find a buyer for the paper would continue although these had so far proved unsuccessful.

Matt Ramsbottom, managing director of Revolution 96.2, said: “We believe there is still a lot of love for the Oldham Chronicle, not just from the thousands of people who read it every day.”

“Oldham has a very strong local business community that also understood the Oldham Chronicle was at the heart of that community.”

The move has already won the backing of local MP Jim McMahon.  He said: “It’s massive strength was that it was of the town and of its people and whoever takes it over has got to make sure that that local community connection is at the heart of any bid going forward.”

Noel Mahon, managing director of Royton based company PJR Windows, added: “We’ve benefitted from a relationship with The Chron which stretches back over 20-years. We would really welcome Revolution 96.2 being successful in their rescue bid as they are an Oldham based company, already heavily associated with our community and most importantly, able to offer local jobs to local people.”

The Oldham Times, which will be edited by Bolton News editor Ian Savage, will go on sale next Thursday with a cover price of 80p.

Newsquest has recruited four Oldham-based journalists to work on the new title, at least one of whom is thought to have been a former Chronicle staffer.

2 comments

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  • September 15, 2017 at 1:08 pm
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    Great news,local and cares about the community and not just about taking money from the area on the back of the Chronicle closure!! Hope the Revolution and Matt and KPMG get this deal done!! Best for the area 100&

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  • September 15, 2017 at 5:40 pm
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    At last what seems like some positive news. hope it succeeds.

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