Local Press

Part of the debate – in Westminster Hall at 11:00 am on 20th January 2009.

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Photo of Ashok Kumar Ashok Kumar Labour, Middlesbrough South and East Cleveland 11:00 am, 20th January 2009

Indeed.

I shall propose a couple of solutions, because it is no good my simply raising the issues. I am sure that my hon. Friend the Minister would like to hear some solutions and suggestions, and I hope that he will take them up. Can anything be done to prevent this dreadful situation from having devastating consequences for our local news? It is clear that there is a case for some form of rescue package for local papers that are struggling, but we have to ask what, in practical terms, can be done. Of course, the local press themselves must adapt to changing circumstances, as my hon. Friend David Taylor has said. It needs to move away from a lazy reliance on simply inputting press releases from the local councils, the nearest big football club or local businesses.