The bi-monthly magazine dedicated to the life and times of Pride and Prejudice author Jane Austen has been redesigned and relaunched under its new owner, Lansdown Media Ltd.
The new publisher, journalist Tim Bullamore who is a sub-editor on The Times and an obituary writer for The Daily Telegraph, bought Jane Austen’s Regency World earlier this year when he heard it was going to close under owners, the Jane Austen Centre in Bath.
He said: ‘As a journalist I hate to see written publications having to close and I saw an awful lot of promise there. It was being run by really great people who didn’t have a magazine publishing background. They were going to close it and it only had a small number of subscribers and little advertising. We’ve already more than exceeded our targets in advertising for the first year and subscriptions on the way up.”
Jane Austen’s Regency World remains the official magazine of the Jane Austen Centre.
The new-look September issue of Jane Austen’s Regency World has been changed from A4 stapled to handbook-sized and perfect bound (similar to women’s monthly Glamour) and has had a redesign reducing down the 40 different fonts used in the old magazine to just four.
The magazine has also incorporated a new font made from samples of Jane Austen’s handwriting.
New sections in the magazine include a news section – which will include all Jane Austen related news such as first editions being sold – and a letters page.
Celebrity writers will be making an appearance, with former Prime Minister Sir John Major writing on cricket in Austen’s time and Daily Mail columnist Bel Mooney on how she has been inspired by Jane Austen.
The redesign has been undertaken by Philip Jansseune, of Walker-Jansseune, a design agency based in Bath.
The magazine currently has a circulation of 1,000 – sold in the Jane Austen museum and Jane Austen attractions and on subscription, with 50 per cent of sales in America, 25 per cent in the UK and the remaining 25 per cent to other fans of the writer around the world. Bullamore said he would like to see that doubled in the next year.
He said: ‘There is a seemingly insatiable demand from both sides of the Atlantic – and indeed the whole English-speaking world – for information about the Regency era, and particularly about Jane Austen.”