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‘Good news’ publisher expands further with launch of new weekly

An independent publisher specialising in local “positive news” titles has further expanded with the launch of a third newspaper.

Hartlepool Life was founded in 2017 by three former Hartlepool Mail staffers, and the company has since launched East Durham Life to serve the area to the north of their original patch.

Now it has also announced the launch of Stockton & Billingham Life, while plans for a fourth title to serve an as-yet-unnamed area have also been revealed.

The three titles are all free and available only via pick-up.

Stockton Life

Director Dirk van der Werff said: “We have proved the concept of positive news, our public love it. The advertisers also love the fact that their products and services are not up against rape trials, one-punch knock-outs and stabbings.

“We have now been established more than two years and employ over 20 people – most of them ex-newspaper journalists, production staff and administrators.

“We have a small and happy team who know their jobs inside out and who are all thrilled to be ‘back at the coal-face’ and we have just added a further two media sales staff for the new title.

“In a declining industry, in one of the most deprived areas of the country we are a true success story and in the next year we are ramping up our ambitions in all departments and see where we go. We are all very excited about what we have achieved already and by our plans for the future.”


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  • April 11, 2019 at 9:21 am

    Publishers can’t sell bad news nowadays and have to give good news away. What price news?

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  • April 11, 2019 at 2:40 pm

    It’s all well and good to give a greater emphasis to positive news, but what is one to do when a community is rocked by a “negative” story that’s too big to ignore?

    It brings to mind a time when I worked at a Hertfordshire weekly and one of our rivals launched a “pioneering” happy-only title. In that same week, a man was stabbed on his doorstep in an area not especially known for violence.

    We splashed on that while the other paper went with “It’s National Baking Week! Here are 10 fab recipes to share with friends and family.”

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