Trinity Mirror cuts: Black Country Bugle is latest Local World title targeted with loss of three out of five reporters - Press Gazette

Trinity Mirror cuts: Black Country Bugle is latest Local World title targeted with loss of three out of five reporters

The Black Country Bugle is the latest former Local World title to face cutbacks from new owner Trinity Mirror.

According to the National Union of Journalists its offices at the Dudley Archives and Local History Centre are to close and three out of five reporters are to be made redundant. In future it will be run from a trading state in Tamworth, 32 miles away.

The paid-for weekly title covers Dudley, Sandwell, Wolverhampton and Walsall .

According to the NUJ it will come under an existing Trinity Mirror editor who already runs five other newspapers in Staffordshire and the West Midlands.

It was founded as an independent title in 1972 but became part of Iliffe Media, then Local World and then Trinity Mirror when it took over Local World in a £240m deal last year.

It has only been in its current offices for a year and has an audited sale of 8,724 copies per week at 80p.

NUJ Northern and Midlands organiser Chris Morley said: “Having been a reporter in the Black Country, I know how much the million people in the area respects their industrial tradition.

“The Bugle is a vital part of life, remembering that heritage and stimulating debate about what can be learned from the past. It has punched above its weight and even won a regional journalism award despite being badly neglected and starved of the investment necessary to make it the great success it should be.

“I believe these plans are ruinous for the future of the Bugle and potentially commercial suicide if carried out as they have been presented. With no dedicated editor in the area and only two staff, I fail to see how it could work.

“I believe there is a big opportunity here and would challenge its Trinity Mirror masters to seek a buyer for this loved publication – someone who believes in its intrinsic value and the great editorial team who have about 50 years of experience between them.

“The NUJ will do all it can during the redundancy consultation period to identify what issues are driving this announcement and work to develop a better alternative that can be positive, not only for the staff but also for the company.”



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Author: Dominic Ponsford

Dominic Ponsford is the editor of Press Gazette