Johnston Press - Statement

Part of the debate – in the House of Lords at 6:47 pm on 19th November 2018.

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Photo of Lord Garnier Lord Garnier Conservative 6:47 pm, 19th November 2018

My Lords, I share the noble Lord’s nostalgia for the many titles that our local communities and regions used to enjoy reading, as does the noble Baroness on the Liberal Democrat Benches, but may I caution my noble friend not to commit the Government to investing huge sums of taxpayers’ money, whether it comes from Facebook or other media platforms, in a product which the public is increasingly not reading? My noble friend’s point about investing in online local media outlets is the one that we need to concentrate on, and if public money is to be spent on this exercise, surely that is where it ought to be spent. Young people do not read print national newspapers, let alone local newspapers, so surely we need to concentrate on the future offerings of the media world rather than, sadly, the many forms of local newspaper that we so much enjoyed in our youth.