About the Ledbury Newspapers

The first Ledbury newspaper was the Ledbury Free Press founded in 1869. In 1875 it was bought by the Ledbury printer, Mr. Luke Tilley, from a Mr. Baylis. He and his daughter continued to print and publish the paper, and in time it was renamed the Ledbury Guardian and Herefordshire Advertiser.

Original Ledbury Reporter masthead from 1897

A second broadsheet was founded in 1896, the Ledbury Reporter and District Chronicle. The first issue appeared on Friday 27 November and the masthead from Issue 7 of 1897 is shown above. From January to August 1914 it seems to have been printed as pages within The Abergavenny Mail, published at this time in Ledbury. This arrangement ended in the August.

Original Ledbury Guardian masthead from 1914

Above is the LG & HA masthead from October 1914 with a prominent advert for the Tilley family’ latest enterprise in the corner.

Until 1921 the town supported two newspapers but in that year, the Reporter absorbed the Ledbury Guardian and Herefordshire Advertiser and the new paper was logically renamed the Ledbury Reporter and Guardian.

Ledbury Reporter and Guardian masthead

Above is the 1945 masthead. It finally dropped the and Guardian from the beginning of 1968. Since 1970 it has been a local sub-edition of the Malvern Gazette, initially as the Ledbury edition of the Malvern Gazette and Ledbury Reporter; it was renamed the Ledbury Reporter and Malvern Gazette in 1975, but became simply Ledbury Reporter in 1993.

Ledbury Reporter masthead

The present Ledbury Reporter is a weekly, tabloid-size newspaper published on a Friday and sold in the market town of Ledbury and surrounding parts of eastern Herefordshire. It is one of fifteen newspapers published by Newsquest (Midlands South), with editorial offices in Worcester. The Newsquest organisation was formed in 1996 and it now publishes over 200 newspapers in the UK. It was bought by and is now a subsidiary of media giant, Gannett Co., Inc., Virginia, U.S.A.

The British Library holds hard copies of the Ledbury Reporter and Guardian from 1921 to 1967 and microfilm of the Ledbury Reporter and Malvern Gazette / Ledbury Reporter from 1986 onwards. The hard copies will be stored at their Additional Storage Building at Boston Spa, West Yorkshire.

Sources: British Newspapers Online http://www.britishpapers.co.uk
Newsquest Media Group http://www.newsquest.co.uk
both accessed May 2014.

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