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Why has there been a resurgence in the local and regional newspaper industry?

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Catherine Gee L6HH 30-1-00 Why has there been a resurgence in the local and regional newspaper industry? Local and regional newspapers used to be something that was complacent and that everybody bought but when sales started to decline the industry realised that they needed a change. Up until the 1980s the local and regional newspaper industry was successful, but from then sales began to drop and some titles folded. This was due to many reasons including competition from other media. In 1995 a resurgence starts as newspapers realised that there was a problem and began to tackle it with scheme's such as the Reader Project. A local newspaper provides for a local area, usually just a town, city or village such as the Lancaster Guardian and the Bolton Evening News. A regional newspaper provides for a larger area, usually a county like the Lancashire Evening Post and the Yorkshire Evening Post. There are three different kinds of a local/regional newspaper, which are daily, Sunday, and weekly. In the 1950s a local paper was a must-read and local and regional newspapers were very popular. ...read more.


They realised that they had a big problem. They were going back to basics and asking themselves questions like 'who reads our paper?' and 'what is a news story?' The sort of questions that are asked when a newspaper is starting out. A lot more useful information stories began to appear along with human interest stories. Everything has been done to bring the newspaper closer to their readers. The Lancaster Guardian features many 'News in Brief' sections in order to appeal to the younger audience or 'blip culture'. At the end of the section it asks for any stories the readers may have which makes the newspaper seem like 'your newspaper'. Many human interest stories are featured with no detail being too small which, again, shows identifying with the reader. Sections have been added such as a motoring section, a classified section and a property section. 20% of extra weekly sales is accounted for by job advertisements so this will have helped boost circulation. Subtle changes were made to the appearance of the newspaper. The Masthead was subtly changed, the plugs on the cover were altered and gradually the amount of colour and photographs has increased. ...read more.


Because of this local newspapers have prospered. In areas such as Doncaster, which has the Doncaster Star, Paisley, which has the Paisley Daily Express and Truro, which has the West Briton, this has shown to be true. The West Briton is the second most successful paper in Britain with a circulation of 46 000 copies per week. National figures show how the rate of decline of newspaper sales has slowed. In 1995 there was a 2.2% drop whereas in 1997 this had slowed to 0.5%. Further proof that there has been a resurgence was shown in September 1999. Trinity International, which is a local newspaper group, bought the Mirror Group, which is a national company. This shows how the industry now has the means and confidence enough to expand. Because of this resurgence the newspaper industry is no longer complacent about its readers. Everything they do to the newspaper is now seen as important. But what does the future hold for local and regional newspapers? There may be a continued increase in circulation but it is unknown how long it will last. The events of the past few years have been beneficial to both the industry and the reader as the reader gets a better product and advertising revenue is now at an all time high. ...read more.

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