National groups 'took the baton' from local newspaper

Romford Recorder editor Mark Sweetingham began his legal battle to name the mother two years ago and went to the Old Bailey to challenge the Section 39 gagging order, writes Jon Slattery.

When the case was referred back to the Family Court, it became clear that the paper, part of the Archant group, would have to employ counsel and incur large legal fees.

Nicholas Alway of Farrer & Co, who was handling the case for the paper, approached national groups for help. Associated Newspapers, News International and Mirror Group Newspapers took up the challenge.

Legal costs for both sides are estimated at £200,000 and will be met by the taxpayer.

Sweetingham told Press Gazette : “Luckily the national groups took the baton from us. As a local newspaper group we could not sustain those costs.

“I was very heartened by the judgment. I was always confident that we would get the right result because it would have been such a departure and upset for the legal system if it had gone the other way.

“It was great to see the judges put so much emphasis on the importance of the local press”

No comments to display

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *