Plans for a Sunday edition of The Sun have been put on hold following the arrest of four senior journalists over the weekend, according to the Financial Times (behind paywall).
A report this morning said the plans are known as ‘Project X’– but claimed sources had ‘downplayed’reports that a launch date of 29 April ‘had been set in stone”.
The insiders said that managers of News International had decided that the adverse publicity surrounding the arrests and the suspension of the four journalists while police inquiries were going on would hamper any possible launch of a new title, which earlier reports said would be called the Sun on Sunday.
One source told the FT: ‘It has gone way on to the back burner since Saturday,’while former News of the World chief reporter Neville Thurlbeck was quoted as saying: ‘The launch of that newspaper is not even being discussed now.”
Earlier this month Press Gazette reported on a new digital project being developed by News International which is partly staffed by former employees of the News of the World.
The unspecified digital project has the working title Project 222, a reference to the fact that the team is based at 222 Gray’s Inn Road, which is also the home of the Times Literary Supplement.
News International insiders have insisted that Project 222 is not really the secret Sun on Sunday project.