Mirror gets serious
The Daily Mirror launched its revolutionary four-page supplement Mirrorscope. The ambitious brief for the supplement, which ran on Wednesdays and Thursdays, was to deal with international affairs, politics, industry, science, the arts and business.
Daily Mirror Newspapers chairman Hugh Cudlipp told Press Gazette: “This is a significant extension of the Mirror’s policy over the past few years of increasing the paper’s serious content – a policy that has taken Mirror circulation to the highest point in its history.” Cudlipp added that the aim was to win a new audience of readers that the Mirror had not catered for in the past.
The complaint that popular newspapers don’t get their fair share of industry awards was raised in the letters pages of Press Gazette even 35 years ago. The then-editor of the News of the World, Stafford Somerfield, wrote that his paper “never gets a prize of any sort”, even though it was the top-selling national paper – and had been for the past 50 years.
“Do you not think a prize is deserved for this achievement? Perhaps for being the most successful newspaper. It could be a very small prize,” Somerfield suggested.
Sales figures in the same issue of Press Gazette showed Somerfield had a point. The NoW sales for July to December 1967 had just been released. These revealed sales of the paper were up by 10,000 a week to a massive 6,274,169.
A five-day test launch of a new evening for Guildford, the Evening Advertiser, was hailed as “an enormous success with the public” by Ray Tindle, managing director of the Surrey Advertiser group.
Pounds for pa staff
The Press Association was in its centenary year. Among the celebrations planned was a reception at the Guildhall to be attended by the Queen. A service at St Bride’s, Fleet Street, was also to be held, where the Archbishop of Canterbury was to dedicate commemorative glass doors donated by PA. Staff received an inscribed wallet, containing £5 to £25, depending on length of service.
This moody, very Sixties picture of leading members of the Evening Standard’s editorial team dominated the front page of Press Gazette. In the middle of the front row is Magnus Linklater, then diary editor but later launch editor of the Standard’s would-be rival, Robert Maxwell’s shortlived London Daily News. Others pictured include Jonathan Aitken, columnist Angus McGill, cartoonist Jak, legendary Paris correspondent Sam White and political editor Robert
Carvel. One man still with a starring role on the paper is film critic Alexander Walker, pictured in the middle of the group.
The Dog column was bemoaning the economics of Fleet Street. “Mick’s all-night cafÅ½ in Fleet Street made more profit last year than The Sun, the Daily Sketch, The Guardian and The Times put together,” it reported.
Ron’s touchline tip
Photographer Ronald Viner of the Daily Express had his own tip for preventing chills caught on rainswept football grounds. He told Press Gazette: “At the start of last season, I bought a waterproof hat and found that wearing it at matches saved me from getting so many colds. But it needed reproofing after so much wear. So I treated it with tent-proofing solution. It seems to work all right.” n