Ealing Gazette set to expand coverage after Fulham and Hammersmith Chronicle closure

The Ealing Gazette will carry pages dedicated to Hammersmith, Fulham, Chelsea, Kensington and Westminster from next week, Press Gazette understands.

News of the move comes a day before the Fulham and Hammersmith Chronicle is due to be published for the last time.

Trinity Mirror announced last week that the newspaper would close after 25 April, putting 15 jobs at risk.

An article in the last edition of the Chronicle confirmed the launch of new Gazette editions in these areas "to accommodate our readers' and advertisers' needs". Press Gazette revealed last week that Hammersmith and Fulham borough council paid the Chronicle series £80,000 a year through advertising.

The lack of a local newspaper in Hammersmith and Fulham has been the cause of concern for many in the area, including politicians and journalists.

Mark Loveday, a Conservative councillor for the borough, told Press Gazette: “It is a tragedy.

“It is a tragedy that we are going to see the loss of these journalists’ jobs and other jobs.

“The borough is going to be left as one of the few areas in the country without a dedicated local press.”

And today, after hearing that the Ealing Gazette would carry news from Hammersmith, Fulham, Chelsea and Westminster, Hammersmith Labour MP Andy Slaughter tweeted: "Quite worrying. H&F now only London borough without an independent newspaper."

The free Ealing and Acton Gazette recorded an average circulation of 46,269 in 2013, according to ABC figures. According to the Newspaper Society database, the Ealing and Acton Gazette currently has a circulation in Hammersmith and Fulham of 2,074.

A statement on page-two of the last Chronicle said: "From next week we will be re-launching the Fulham Gazette, serving Fulham and Hammersmith as before but now also the boroughs of Kensington and Chelsea and Westminster.

"Following a business review of the Fulham & Hammersmith Chronicle series, with its three editions, it is with regret that we can no longer sustain this title.

"After 126 years, it is with great sadness that our final edition will roll off the presses for the last time today (Friday).
 
"But the good news is, in its place, we will be re-launching the Fulham, Hammersmith, Kensington, Chelsea and Westminster Gazette to accommodate our readers’ and advertisers’ needs.
 
"We would like to take this opportunity to thank all of our readers, advertisers and contributors who have supported the Chronicle over the years that it has reported on events in and around the borough.
 
"We hope you will enjoy reading the re-launched Gazette which will be available from May 2 at newsagents, convenience stores, supermarkets and in total more than 400 outlets in the area,  priced 90p."

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