Back Issues 29.04.05

APRIL 1980


Industrial action takes its toll

The sorry state of industrial relations across the national,
regional and magazine sectors of the press shone through in this Press
Gazette front page. It reported how unofficial action by the NGA print
union had cost The Observer 220,000 copies and The Sunday Times 105,000
copies. The Financial Times had been hit by unofficial action by

Regional editions of TVTimes were not published because of action by the NGA.

Observer’s colour magazine 300,000 run was disrupted. In Bristol, the
Bristol Evening Post and Western Daily Press were suspended in a
dispute with the printers. Press Gazette was not immune. It apologised
to readers for the issue being late and smaller because of industrial
action by the NGA at the contract printers.

Herald hires a herald in Dudley

The Dudley Herald, faced with its first failure to publish in its
114-year history, hired a town crier to shout the news it couldn’t
print. Chief reporter Robin Wilson said: “We were all upset when we
found out that the paper was not coming out after all the hard work we
had put in. But our town crier was a success and it meant that at least
some of the news we had prepared went out to the public.”

Union withdraws from Press Council

The NUJ pulled out of the Press Council, the forerunner to the Press
Complaints Commission. The union had been one of the pioneers of the
Press Council in Britain, but a motion passed at the NUJ annual general
meeting decided to disaffiliate after more than 25 years of membership.
The union eventually decided to rejoin the Press Council, but shortly
afterwards it was replaced by the PCC, on which the NUJ is not

Shrimsley resigns from NoW

Bernard Shrimsley quit after five years as editor of the News of the
World. He declined to comment, but a NoW journalist told Press Gazette
Shrimsley had called a staff meeting to announce his departure. He said
he felt the NoW should go tabloid, but management had disagreed.

History repeats itself

The Argus, Brighton, was celebrating its centenary. While
researching a commemorative issue, journalists discovered a common
denominator between the first issues in 1880 and the 1980 copies of The
Argus. Both had reports of war in Afghanistan.

Essex launch focuses on home delivery

A daily paper was being launched in Chelmsford, the Chelmsford
Evening Herald. The paper, edited by Derek Hales, was to be distributed
principally by home delivery.

A millionaire in the making

Former Daily Express sub Paul Morgan had launched his fourth free
weekly, the Sutton Borough Guardian. Morgan became one of the first
free entrepreneur millionaires when he sold his South London Guardian
group to Reed.

Sales increases are a cause for celebration

The Guardian and The Observer were celebrating big sales increases
for the period October 1979 to March 1980. The Guardian was up nine per
cent to 367,807 and The Observer by 5.7 per cent to 1,010,374. The
Daily Express was selling 2.4 million, the Sunday Express 3.2 million
and the new Daily Star 965,904. The News of the World was selling 4.8
million, the Sunday Mirror 3.8 million and the Sunday People 3.9

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