Liverpool Daily Post to switch from daily to weekly

Trinity Mirror has announced the Liverpool Daily Post is to switch from a daily to weekly publication in the New Year

Journalists are beginning work on dummy designs for the new product which has ‘The Liverpool Post’ as a working title.

The switch is expected to result in the loss of six editorial roles from the title’s Liverpool newsroom but Trinity said the move would have no impact on the Liverpool Echo, which will continue as a daily paper.

In a separate move the company has also announced that its free Liverpool weekly titles – The Bootle Times, Merseymart (South) and Star (Anfield & West Derby plus Maghull) – are to be merged into two new community newspapers, The Star and The Merseymart.

The new editions will be carried in the Tuesday edition of the Liverpool Echo.

The 100-page weekly Liverpool Post will be published every Thursday but will continue to provide daily news through its website www.liverpooldailypost.co.uk.

The latest ABC figures show the Liverpool Daily Post had an average circulation of 8,217 – of which 82.8 per cent were paid for – in the first six months of the year, down 2.1 per cent year on year.

Trinity’s announcement comes after regional publishing rival Northcliffe switched four of its dailies to weekly publications in the past year: the Lincolnshire Echo, Exeter Express & Echo, Scunthorpe Telegraph and the Torquay Herald Express.

Post editor Mark Thomas said: ”We are lucky to be custodians of one of the great brands in journalism and we’ve been serving our city for 156 years.

‘This change sets us up to serve it for the next 156 – in print and online and through whichever channels readers seek to receive it. We’ve just completed research which proves yet again how much people like and want our current content mix.

‘However, we appreciate that the world is changing and people’s buying habits and news consumption requirements are very different.

”There is clear evidence that a bumper Post once a week, full of high-quality news, views and analysis, will be better for readers and a more appealing vehicle for advertisers.

”This move enables us to maximise brand potential in what are extraordinarily challenging times for the media industry and for business in general.”

He added: ”We realise there will be many Post followers who will still want a daily update on the news. We will make sure that they get that through our website www.liverpooldailypost.co.uk which will update all news with our usual special emphasis on business, sport, the arts, and politics.

”We are also working on exciting new plans for developing the website further.”

The managing director of Trinity Mirror North West & North Wales, Warren Butcher, said: ‘We recognise that the proposed changes are fundamental and that they affect long-lived and much-loved brands.

”However, a change in approach is vital. Our business has been built on the ability to be proactive and to continually adapt our portfolio to reflect market conditions and changing consumer trends.

“We are convinced these changes will strengthen and add greater relevance to our portfolio in the long term and in turn improve the service we provide to both readers and advertisers.’

UPDATE 24/11/11 2.15pm

The NUJ has condemned Trinity’s decision to turn the Post weekly.

NUJ general secretary said: “The end of one of the country’s most famous morning papers is a national tragedy. This paper was a part of my daily life when I grew up in the city and the people of Liverpool will lose out enormously.

“The move from daily to weekly production is part of a very worrying trend – and here we have yet another iconic city title biting the dust. Trinity Mirror should be investing in quality journalism, not killing off our local press.”

NUJ Northern & Midlands organiser Chris Morley added: “This is the latest in a string of grim redundancy announcements by Trinity Mirror. Turning the Liverpool Daily Post into a weekly is a real gamble by the company with a title that has a prestigious history of publishing.

“As a union, we remain to be convinced that this format is likely to be a successful way forward in Britain’s big cities. Trinity Mirror has already carried out a similar operation with the Birmingham Post some two years ago but the jury is still out on the impact on circulation.

“We will be engaging with the company closely during the consultation now to take place, but our members are acutely conscious of the effect these cuts would have on already extremely stretched departments such as photographic.”

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