It seems a long time ago that we started The Moorlander – fifty editions ago, nearly two years.
But the idea for The Moorlander started over twenty years ago when I often visited Dartmoor to see my mum. The paper was always going to be called The Moorlander even back then; I would sit at the kitchen table in my home in London laying out and drawing page ideas.
I had been brought up in the newspaper trade; my father, mother and wife were and are journalists, my grandfather was a printer at the Daily Mirror. I started selling Sunday newspapers outside Stockwell tube station when I was a kid before becoming a messenger and darkroom boy for a news agency. Now I was a Fleet Street photographer covering major events around the world, I would be on a plane somewhere most weeks, but The Moorlander was always at the back of my mind.
I will freely admit that this paper was born out of boredom. I was in my early sixties didn’t have much to do, so why not give The Moorlander a go? I had a little money to start it, but I found a willing hard-working team. We spend much of our time out and about talking to local people or photographing events across Dartmoor. That’s something, in this day and age, when most reporters spend most of their time sitting looking at a screen or the internet.
A chief reporter on a major national paper told me recently that a lot of his reporters spend their time sitting at their desks looking at people, especially celebrities and politicians, Twitter and Facebook feeds, to find stories. He just wished he could get back to the old-fashioned ways of reporting which is what we at The Moorlander do. But it’s Ross our Graphic Designer whose layout and design makes this newspaper work.
I am proud of The Moorlander’s campaigns, our news reporting, features, sports, arts coverage and photography over the last fifty editions. We invest time and money in journalism. Circulation is growing, this edition our print run is 6,000 copies. People across Dartmoor and beyond like, believe and read this paper from cover to cover. I believe one day The Moorlander will become one of the best local newspapers in this country.
I would also like say thank you to every reader, subscriber, contributor and advertiser, the Publisher Eric, Arts Editor Karen, Reporter Ben Fox, Susan in Accounts, Laura and
everyone that has been part of the team who have supported this newspaper, The Moorlander, for the first fifty editions. Thank You. Stuart Editor