Shrewsbury Chronicle adopts part-paid part-free strategy

The Shrewsbury Chronicle has become the latest regional newspaper to adopt a part-free part-paid publishing model.

The 227-year-old weekly has announced the change alongside a redesign due to be introduced next Wednesday.

About 30,000 copies of the paper will be delivered free to homes in the centre of the town. It will still be sold at a 40p cover price in the surrounding villages.

Shropshire Newspapers managing director Colin Spicer said: “We are certain this new formula will give readers what they want in terms of quality, local editorial while at the same time providing advertisers with a brilliant vehicle with which to reach their target audience.

“The newspaper will be seen by more people than ever before and we are sure they will like what they see. The response from local advertisers has been overwhelmingly positive and we are certain the new paper will meet their changing needs.”

The Chronicle’s sister paper, the North Shropshire Chronicle, will also be redesigned.

A number of regional newspaper publishers have followed the lead of the Manchester Evening News and adopted a part-paid, part-free strategy in recent years.

The mixed-circulation technique has been adopted by the Reading Evening Post, the Birmingham Post, and weeklies including the Archant-owned Gravesend Reporter and Dartford and Swanley Times series.

The Shrewsbury Chronicle had an average weekly circulation of 14,015 in the second half of 2008, according to ABC.

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