Chancellor Alistair Darling believes that local newspapers are more trusted than nationals and often beat more high-profile papers to political scoops.
Darling talked about importance of local media, and the pressures that the industry is facing at a lunch attended by regional press political journalists last week, according to The Newspaper Society.
He said: “I think people do trust their local newspapers more than they do national newspapers.
“One of the most interesting things, as you will know working for newspapers outside of London, is that I’ll say something here, you will write it up, and it will appear in your paper tomorrow.
“Then about two or three days later, a national newspaper will phone up and say ‘I’ve got this really good exclusive’, you recognise it and say ‘that’s what I said to that newspaper about four days earlier’.”