Insight and analysis from Press Gazette editor Dominic Ponsford

Thatcher front pages: The woman who saved Britain or who divided a nation?

News of Baroness Thatcher's death prompted a huge variety of front pages today - prompting many national newspapers to abandon their usual templates and go for a magazine-style approach.

The Times reprised the cover-wrap picture fronts which proved such a hit for it during the London Olympics with no headline but just a repeat of the quote from St Francis of Assisi which Thatcher used following her first general election victory in 1979 : "Where there is dischord..."
 
 
The Sun goes straight to the point with its "MAGGIE DEAD IN BED AT THE RITZ" headline.
 
 
The Guardian went for a poster-style front page for the first time that I can recall, and ran a remarkable epitaph written by late-great columnist for the paper Hugo Young. 
 
 
"What happened at the hands of this woman's indifference to sentiment and good sense in the early 1980s brought unnecessary calamity to the lives of several million people who lost their jobs. It led to riots that nobody needed. More insidiously, it fathered a mood of tolerated harshness."
 
 
The Independent, Daily Mail, Daily Express,Daily Telegraph, Independent and Metro all in their own way went for news magazine-style fronts - with the Independent most effective, in my opinion.
 
 
 
 
 
 
Only the FT and the Daily Star decided that there were other stories also worth putting on the front page, for the latter it was Simon Cowell's affirmation that he is not gay.
 
 
 
For the Daily Mirror, a rather unflattering Thatcher shot was used to illustrate a front page reflecting the loathing felt for her among many of its readers on the Left.
 
 
But while the Mirror front stayed pretty much on the fence, the Socialist Worker, Morning Star and Scotland's Daily Record went straight for the attack - with the Socialist Worker winning the prize for most creative use of photoshop.
 
 
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