Kent Messenger first to reveal asylum story

The Kent Messenger was the first to reveal that the Coniston Hotel in Sittingbourne was to be used for asylum seekers, claims Simon Irwin, the Kent Messenger Group’s editorial director.

He disputed that the story was broken by Kent on Sunday (Press Gazette, 24 January), although conceded that KoS had an exclusive angle in its revelation that MP Derek Wyatt was seeking a judicial review of the Home Office decision to buy the hotel.

The original story, said Irwin, appeared in the Sittingbourne edition on 10 January (above), and had been in other local media before the KoS story.

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