It's an increasingly difficult time for local media both online and in print with all of them struggling to keep going due to the Coronavirus Pandemic.

Advertising revenue on which the sector depends has almost completely dried up for all local media. Also with the public taking less trips out of their homes during the current shutdown it also lessens the chance of picking up their local newspaper.

In the latest announcement the Newry Reporter announced today they are suspending publication temporarily. They follow The Examiner in Crossmaglen who stopped publishing in March. They both hope to be back in operation in the near future.

The Newry Reporter.

Speaking of their regret at having to make the decision Editor Paul Welsh said "The Reporter has been bringing you local news since 1867 and it has taken the spread of the Covid-19 virus to almost stop us in our tracks"

Mr Welsh added "While we are living in unprecedented times, we have continued to bring you the best in local news and sport and I am immensely proud of all my colleagues for the efforts they have gone to, particularly over the last number of weeks, to keep the Newry Reporter in publication.

"The reality is that these are extraordinarily difficult trading times however, we are not the only local independent business in this situation and like so many others, we will return as soon as it is possible to do so."

Gerry Murray, Editor of The Examiner spoke of their suspension saying "Our intention is to resume production when it is safe to do so. We take this opportunity to thank you all for your support and look forward to continuing to serve our community when we get through this."

Unique Contribution to their Communities

The Independent Community News Network (ICNN) campaign for its 107 members including and together with the newly formed Public Interest News Foundation they spoke recently on the value of independent publishers.

“Independent publishers include a wide range of locals, regionals, specialised and investigative outlets. The independent quality lies in their smaller structures but their unique value lies in their reach, engagement and overall contribution to their communities.”

“Their contribution to their communities and audiences is unparalleled. In several cases, they are the only source of news where they are based.”

Local news media is an essential part of a democracy. It's responsible for holding authority to account and keeping residents in touch with everything that is happening locally. At we wish our friends in the Reporter well and look forward to their return soon.

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