Newspaper Facts You Never Knew

Other than wrapping up a tasty batch of fish and chips, and their iconic smell, here’s a few facts you never knew about newspapers…

 

The Courant Newspaper

- The first British newspaper was the Courant printed in 1621

- The Daily Courant was the first regular daily British newspaper printed in 1702

 

The Daily Mirror Newspaper

- The Daily Mirror founded in 1903 is Britain’s oldest surviving tabloid

- The Daily Mirror was the first UK daily national newspaper to produce a free weekly colour magazine (on a Wednesday) in 1969

- The Sunday Mirror newspaper used to be called the Sunday Pictorial until 1963

 

The Times Newspaper

- The Times newspaper did not carry news stories on the front page until 1966

- The Times is the UK’s oldest current daily national newspaper, founded as the Daily & Universal Register in 1785 before changing its name to The Times in 1788

- The Times crossword first appeared on 1st February 1930

- The Times newspaper was not printed for nearly a year between 1978 and 1979 due to an industrial dispute

- The first photograph in the Times newspaper appeared in 1914

 

The Sunday Times

- The Sunday Times newspaper (despite its name) had no relationship with The Times newspaper until a change of ownership in 1966 led to them becoming sister papers

- The Sunday Times was the first UK national Sunday newspaper to supply a colour magazine supplement in 1962

 

The Guardian Newspaper

- The Guardian newspaper used to be called the Manchester Guardian until 1959

- The Guardian and Observer newspapers changed to a mid-size format in 2006 (neither broadsheet nor tabloid) - the format is officially known as “Berliner” after a German newspaper of the same size

 

The Daily Mail Newspaper

- Most of the UK’s national newspapers were broadsheets before the 1970s, including the Daily Mail and Daily Express

- The Daily Mail is mentioned in The Beatles’ hit single Paperback Writer

- The Daily Mail (founded 1896) was the first UK daily newspaper to sell more than 1 million copies, making it the biggest selling Western newspaper

- The sister paper of the Daily Mail is called The Mail on Sunday to prevent it from being confused with the sister paper of the Scottish Daily Record which is called the Sunday Mail!

- The Daily Mail has been owned by the family of Lord Rothermere since it was founded in 1896

 

The Observer Newspaper

- The Observer founded in 1791 is the world’s oldest Sunday paper

- The Observer became the sister paper of The Guardian in 1993 following a change in ownership

The Sun

- The Sun newspaper is currently Britain’s biggest selling daily newspaper

- The Sun newspaper used to be called the Daily Herald until 1964 and was re-launched as a tabloid in 1969

News of the World

- The News of the World was the most popular English language newspaper in the world in the 1950s

- The News of the World and Sunday Mirror newspapers both appointed their first female editors in 1987

- The News of the World is the biggest selling Sunday newspaper

 

Did You Know about these Newspapers?

 

- The Daily Telegraph and Financial Times are currently the only UK national daily newspapers to retain a broadsheet format

- The Financial Times (founded in 1888) was first printed on pink paper in 1893 to distinguish it from its rival the Financial News- the Financial News was eventually merged with the Financial Times in 1945

- The Yorkshire Post was the first British newspaper to report on The Abdication Crisis on 2nd December 1936

- The London Evening News was the biggest selling London evening paper for decades before merging with the London Evening Standard in 1980

- The Daily Star was first printed in 1978 and is no relation of “The Star”, which was a London evening paper printed 1888-1960

- The Today newspaper (printed from 1986-1995) was the UK’s first national full colour newspaper

- The Daily Herald was the first UK daily newspaper to sell more than 2 million copies, making it the biggest selling paper in the world in 1933

- The Daily Express (founded 1900) was the UK’s most popular daily by 1936 with the largest circulation in the world of 2.25 million, rising to 3 million in 1944 and 4 million in 1949

- The Daily Express was the last UK national newspaper to leave Fleet Street, which was the home of the British Press from 1702-1989

- The Sunday Express was the first UK national newspaper to carry a crossword on 2nd November 1924

- The Independent (founded 1986) is the UK’s youngest national daily newspaper

- The Daily Star Sunday (started 2002) is the UK’s youngest national Sunday newspaper

- The Scotsman was first printed as a weekly newspaper in 1817, before becoming a daily newspaper in 1855

- The Herald (Glasgow) was first printed as the Glasgow Advertiser in 1783, before changing its name to the Herald & Advertiser in 1802, the Glasgow Herald in 1805 and The Herald in 1992!

- The Daily Graphic (founded 1890) was the UK’s first daily illustrated newspaper

 

Famous Figures in Newspapers

- Charles Dickens was the first editor for the Daily News, which later merged with the Daily Chronicle to form the News Chronicle.

- Michael Foot (former leader of the Labour Party) was once editor of the Tribune newspaper

- The Sporting Life (printed 1859-1998) was the late Queen Mother’s favourite paper

- Rupert Bear is the longest running cartoon character in a British newspaper first appearing in the Daily Express on 8th November 1920 where he still appears today

- The British Gazette newspaper was printed by the Government during the General Strike of 1926 and was edited by Winston Churchill

- Winston Churchill was acting as war correspondent for the Morning Post newspaper in 1899 during the Boer War when he was captured - his subsequent escape from the prison camp made him a national hero

 

More Newspaper Facts

 

- Evening newspapers are the best way to read the news from the day itself.

- Newspapers prefer to be stored in a cool, damp and dark environment – therefore our storage location in Scotland is ideal!

- UK national newspapers did not use to be printed on Good Friday (Easter) and the Financial Times still does not print on Good Friday

- Newspapers in the 1940s have less pages than newspapers from the 1930s due to a shortage of newsprint in the 1940s as a result of the Second World War

- Newspaper titles change over the years and a title of the past is generally very different from its counterpart today. Most papers were broadsheets with greater and more serious journalistic content. The Sunday People for example was a highly-regarded broadsheet 50 years ago that was not that different than the more serious broadsheets of today.

Other than wrapping up a tasty batch of fish and chips, and their iconic smell, here’s a few facts you never knew about newspapers…