Western Morning News archive: back issue newspapers

Western Morning News archive: back issue newspapers

History of Western Morning News

According to Wikipedia, Western Morning News was founded in 1860 by William Saunders and Edward Spender, and has been published continuously ever since. In 1866 Saunders and Spender converted the company to a Limited Liability Company (LLC). This may have been to make the paper seem larger than it was, but in fact only two shareholders were not family members, and these two only held minimal shares.

In 1920 many Devon-area newspapers were having financial problems. Around this time Western Morning News, Western Daily Mercury, and Western Evening Herald were all purchased by Sir Leicester Harmsworth. A new publishing office was built at the site of the old Western Daily Mercury offices in 1938. Modern fireproof building techniques and materials contributed to the building surviving Nazi attacks during World War II.

By 2010 the Western Morning News seems to have run into financial trouble. The Derriford office was closed and 95 workers lost their jobs. In 2012 the newspaper was purchased by Local World and managed by South West Media Group. In 2015 Western Morning News was purchased by Trinity Mirror for £220 million. As part of this acquisition the Sunday edition, due to limited interest and low sales, was discontinued. It had only been published for two years. In February 2016, the Western Morning News website merged with The Herald’s website, where news and sports coverage for the counties of Devon, Cornwall and Somerset are displayed alongside news for the city of Plymouth.

Interesting Facts About Western Morning News

  • The paper converted from broadsheet to tabloid style in 1997. This was the trend for UK newspapers, but Western Morning News was the last to transition
  • Offices survived bombings during World War II

Archival Information Archival copies of articles from November 2010-present are available on the Western Morning News website. These are available for viewing at no charge. Only articles and events are shown; no obituaries, birth or wedding announcements, or ads are available.

There is currently a volunteer project underway through the Plymouth and West Devon Record Office to scan over 35,000 glass plate negatives into digital format. These records begin in 1941. There is no charge to view the available images, but not all records are available. An index is provided on the Record Office’s website. To search for available issues, enter “Western Morning News” in the search field. Additional filters, such as “digital image” or other keywords, may be added to narrow results.

If you're looking for Western Morning News back issues follow these steps:

  1. Visit the original newspapers archive page
  2. Select the date you're interested in
  3. Check the availability of Western Morning News
  4. Select your favourite package or if the newspaper is not available select another date or choose another old newspaper