Home News Newry Reporter: Buyer saves 155-year-old paper from closure

Newry Reporter: Buyer saves 155-year-old paper from closure

A buyer has been found for one of Northern Ireland's oldest weekly newspapers, just days before it was due to print its final edition and close.

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The Newry Reporter has been taken over by publishing firm National World.

The new owner said the sale was a key opportunity to underpin its growth in Northern Ireland, where it owns several other local papers.

The Newry Reporter, which has been in circulation for 155 years, employs 10 people in Margaret Street in the city.

Their jobs had been placed at risk following an announcement earlier this month from previous owner, Edward Hodgett Ltd, that the struggling newspaper would have to cease trading.

They were due to publish their last ever edition on 26 January.

However, on Friday, National World confirmed it had stepping in to acquire the title.

“The Reporter has a proud history and National World is committed to uphold and foster its heritage,” said National World’s executive chairman David Montgomery.

“It is important that its independent editorial voice is protected and plays a part in promoting Newry and the wider region.

“We are proud to take on that role and support all the Reporter’s staff and contributors in that mission.”

The Newry Reporter was first published in 1867 but for most of the past century it was owned by the Hodgett family.

“For 96 years and across three generations, the Hodgett family has had the immense pleasure to steward The Newry Reporter, serving Newry, Mourne and South Down, since the Victorian era,” said a statement from Edward Hodgett Ltd.

It added that world wars, the partition of Ireland, the Troubles and the Covid-19 pandemic “have all been taken in the title’s stride… until now”.

“Last week it grieved us to announce the profoundly sad news to our readership and further afield, that we would be producing our last edition at the end of January 2023.

“However, we never gave up striving to find a more positive outcome for both our wonderful staff and one of Ireland’s most historic newspapers.”

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