Local paper wins Hughes exclusive

Former Home Office Minister Beverley Hughes went to her local free paper, the Stretford & Urmston Messenger, rather than the national press to give her first in-depth interview after resigning.

She left the Government in March following a row over the “fast-tracking” of asylum applications. Six weeks later, after turning down interview requests from national television and print media, she decided to tell her story to the Messenger last week.

Editor Lynn Hughes said: “We stayed away from all the politics and the media spin when Bev was in the spotlight throughout March because we felt it had no real relevance for our readers.

“A vox pop in her own constituency on what people thought of the national coverage and the issues proved us right, and when she resigned, we just kept to the facts.

“It’s been a real coup for us, with an in-depth front-page interview. Coming the week after Local Newspaper Week, it just proves that keeping it local can pay off.”

The interview also appeared in sister paper the Sale & Altrincham Messenger.

By Dominic Ponsford

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