Sales of all of Yorkshire’s daily newspapers continued to slump in the first half of this year, according to figures released today by the Audit Bureau of Circulation.
Amongst the biggest losers were the Bradford Telegraph and Argus, which saw average daily circulation fall 9.7% to 24,173, and the Doncaster Star, which is now selling less than 2,000 copies a day.
The figures won’t be of much comfort to beleaguered local newspaper publisher Johnston Press, which turned two of its Yorkshire dailies – the Halifax Courier and the Scarborough News – into weeklies at the beginning of June as part of a shakeup introduced by new chief executive Ashley Highfield.
While all of the group’s Yorkshire dailies recorded significant falls – The Yorkshire Post (down 4.7%), Yorkshire Evening Post (down 7.4%) and Sheffield Star (down 5.8%) – its regional dailies elsewhere in the UK fared even worse. Johnston Press titles in Edinburgh, Lancashire (Evening Post), Blackpool, Hartlepool, Portsmouth, Sunderland and Wigan all recorded falls of between 10 and 13 per cent.
With the group’s pre-tax profits almost halved and income from print advertising down 12.5% in the first half of this year, it remains to be seen whether the 19 editorial posts shed in Leeds earlier this year through an editorial merger between the YP and the YEP will be enough to save our local Leeds papers as a sustainable print business.
Here’s a list of which Yorkshire dailies have been selling what in the first half of the year.