Sad news as Trinity Mirror closes yet another title.
This time it is the free weekly Prestwich Advertiser which is to close. It had a free circulation of just under 30,000 in 2011 and evidently a loyal following in the part of Greater Manchester that it served, as evidenced by this wonderful tribute video put together by a reader to the tune of Con te partirò (Time to say Goodbye):
Thankfully no jobs are to go as its staff are absorbed into the MEN Media team who will continue to cover the area through the Manchester Evening News print edition and website. But it won't be the same as having your own title dedicated tochronicling the concerns, foibles, successes, tragedies and local obessions of one small corner of England.
As Press Gazette's somewhat flawed but nonetheless informative Mind The News Gap project earlier this year showed – at least 240 local newspapers have closed over the last seven years in the UK versus 70 launches.
From the courtroom to the council chamber, the crime scene to the carnival, we’ve been there. That’s our job, after all – to report on the best, and also, unfortunately, the worst in life.
In 2012, the Prestwich Advertiser has covered many memorable stories.
Who could forget the Stone Roses concerts that drew thousands of fans to Heaton Park?
Certainly not the neighbours who called for action over the mess left behind.
Then there were the floods that wrecked homes in Prestwich and Whitefield and brought our streets to a standstill.
But there were lighter moments, like the Jubilee which brought thousands of you out on to the streets to celebrate and, for which, we produced a seven-page special devoted to your best pictures and stories.
And, in addition to unmissable local fixtures like the Prestwich Carnival, we were inundated with many stories about the Olympic and Paralympic Games, including a certain opening ceremony organiser.
In about two decades, this newspaper has covered several success stories, such as last year’s campaign to save the Longfield Suite from closure.
We’ve celebrated the best of our neighbourhoods – from our stores through the Shop Local campaign and the Portas Pilot bids for Prestwich and Radcliffe, to our unsung heroes through the Prestwich Community Champion awards.
And our reporters have always been willing to get out and about to follow a story – donning high-vis jackets to see how revamped waste collections were going to work, dabbling with the sport of fencing and, in the true spirit of investigative journalism, taste-testing chocolate pizzas.
And then there’s our local heroes, from the famous, like Radcliffe’s own Oscar winner Danny Boyle or Elbow’s Guy Garvey, to the not-quite-so-famous but equally loved, like Jack Yaffe, once dubbed Britain’s oldest shopkeeper, who died this year aged 103.
"We would like to thank our readers and advertisers for their support over the years and hope they understand that this was a very tough decision to make.
"As a multimedia company our commitment to offering the best coverage of events in Prestwich and surrounding areas will continue unabated.
"The Manchester Evening News brings you news, features and sport from the area six days a week.
"And there is extensive coverage on our website www.menmedia.co.ukwhich has the largest audience of any regional newspaper website in the country."