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The Sunday Times Newspaper

Your newspaper gift can be further personalised by adding the recipient’s name, the occasion, and a personal greeting on the Certificate of Authenticity, which acts as a guarantee that your copy of the Sunday Times is a genuine original newspaper.

Historic Newspapers have the UK’s largest archive of the Sunday Times, stretching back over one hundred years. To see the newspaper titles we have for your chosen special day, simply select the date in the box below.

A Brief History of the Sunday Times

The Sunday Times is part of Times Newspapers Limited; a subsidiary of News International, which is owned by the News Corporation group under world media tycoon Rupert Murdoch. It is printed each Sunday in broadsheet format and as of December 2008, the paper has an average daily circulation of 1,155,589 copies. The Sunday Times has traditionally held a moderately centre-right political stance, but it supported the Labour Party under Tony Blair during the general elections of 2001 and 2005.

The Sunday Times was originally called “The New Observer” and it was founded by Daniel Whittle Harvey - later the first Commissioner of the City of London Police - on 18th February 1821. The name of the newspaper was changed to The Sunday Times on 20th October 1822. Despite the choice of title, the paper was unrelated to either The Observer or The Times newspapers at that time.

In the first issue of the Sunday Times, the opening editorial announced:

“We this day submit to the public a new, and, we hope, attractive and useful publication, the principal object of which is to instil an invigorating spirit, suitable to the character and exigencies of the times in which we live…With respect to our choice of title, we wish to observe, that the times themselves having so materially changed from what they were when the press was free and honest, it became necessary that the very face of our paper should announce our intention to keep pace with the variation of their aspect; we therefore thought no title would better express such intention than that which we have adopted; an appellation which, as it will apply to all future periods, will continue to remind both ourselves and our readers, of the necessity of conforming to the demands of the existing moment, and of making those demands the index and impulsion of our conduct.”

The Sunday Times has had a number of owners throughout the years. By 1844, the chief proprietor was Joseph Moses Levy, who also acquired The Daily Telegraph soon after its launch in 1855. Rachel Beer, editor of The Observer, took over the Sunday Times in 1893, before selling the paper to Lord Northcliffe of The Daily Mail in 1908.

William and Gomer Berry became owners of the paper in 1915. The Berry brothers owned a variety of other titles and they decided to split their overall newspaper holdings in 1937. William Berry (by now 1st Viscount Camrose) retained the Daily Telegraph, whilst Gomer Berry (now 1st Viscount Kemsley) formed the Kemsley newspaper group, which included the Sunday Times, the Sunday Graphic and the Daily Sketch.

The Sunday Times began to print news stories on the front page for the first time on 21st January 1940. The front cover had previously been dedicated to advertisements, which had helped to contribute towards the cost of producing the newspaper.

In 1959, the Canadian media entrepreneur Roy Thomson (1st Baron of Fleet) took over the Kemsley newspaper group. As a result, a number of significant changes took place at the Sunday Times, which was now part of Thomson Newspapers Limited. On 11th December 1960, the Sunday Times merged with the Sunday Graphic newspaper. On 4th February 1962, the first edition of “The Sunday Times” colour magazine was printed and distributed with the paper. In 1966, Roy Thomson took over the Times and subsequently formed Times Newspaper Limited, uniting the Times and the Sunday Times as sister newspapers. They have continued to be sister papers to the present day.

The Times and the Sunday Times were closed down between 1st December 1978 and 12th November 1979, due to an industrial dispute between Roy Thomson and the printers union. No Times newspapers were printed during this period. In 1981 Thompson sold Times Newspaper Limited to Rupert Murdoch’s News International.

The Sunday Times’ Supplements

When the Sunday Times re-launched as a full colour paper on 6th July 2008, it also began to regularly publish nine additional newspaper sections and three colour magazines. The current leading newspaper supplements include “Sport“, “News Review”, “Business“, “Money“, “Home”, “Travel” and the “In-gear” motoring section. The three colour magazines are “The Sunday Times Magazine“, a fashion magazine called “Style” and a television and radio listings guide called “Culture”.

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