Free local newspaper regulated by Impress closes due to owner's ill health - Press Gazette

Free local newspaper regulated by Impress closes due to owner's ill health

The Ramsey & Warboys Reporter has stopped publishing after more than two years as its owner says ill health means he cannot continue the newspaper.

Maurice Kendrick, who launched the free monthly title in July 2015, said the decision had been “necessary in order to maintain my health”, adding that he had been “advised to attend hospital”.

The not-for-profit Reporter was a member of alternative press regulator Impress and distributed about 7,000 copies a month across the two Cambridgeshire towns.

In a statement Kendrick said: “It is with great sadness I must inform you that I will not be publishing any further editions of the Ramsey & Warboys Reporter.

“This decision has been taken predominantly due to ill health, as I am unable to further commit myself physically to running the newspaper.”

He told Press Gazette he was “devastated” at the paper’s closure.

“Through all my working life I have never worked so hard on anything as this. It has probably taken a toll on my health as much as anything, but I have been passionate about it,” he said.

The 32-40 page Reporter carried a 50/50 split between editorial content and advertising, which Kendrick said compared to a 75/25 editorial to advertising split in large regional newspapers.

He said: “I have always strived to produce a better product for the area, with real news stories and effective advertising content.”

The former Local World account executive was the only full-time employee at the paper, with editor Adam Roberts and designer Ken Sims both working as freelances, he said.

Kendrick told Press Gazette he launched the Reporter for about £2,500 after splitting from his business partner on the Ramsey & Warboys Informer, which he had launched the year before.

He said that for more than a month he and his family delivered the Reporter themselves before finding a contractor and that it had been just about breaking even financially.