Independent to Thompson
In early 1974, the decision was taken to approach the Chester Chronicle and associated newspaper a member of the Thompson organization, regarding a possible take over of the Newspaper responsibilities. This Chester based company had expressed an interest for several years and the Herald had a natural affinity to them as for over two years they had undertaken the printing contract, by the web offset process, for the newspaper to accommodate the larger 16 page broadsheet papers being produced to cope with the increasing demand for news and advertising space.
In December 1974, the newspaper passed form the private ownership of the Eccleston family, who had been connected with the local weekly since its inception in 1869, over 100 years.
In 1999, the Herald is part of the Trinity Mirror Group, which owns the Liverpool Daily Post & Echo and many newspapers along the North Wales coast.
This transference of newspaper proprietorship in no way affected staff and there were no redundancies whatsoever or even transference to Chester – the editorial and advertising teams became members of the Thomson organization, but remained in their same offices at Whitchurch. The Whitchurch Herald staff remained in the Newtown premises until transferring to St John’s Street in 2008, with the offices closing in 2009.
I conclude with an extract from a leader written by Robert Furber back in the 1880’s. “The conduct of a newspaper whether large or small involves public responsibilities and duties which are not always of the pleasantest character” and in this respect, the Herald has never shirked its responsibilities. Every newspaper maintains a jealous guard on its reputation for never failing its readers and always publishing, and the Herald is justly proud that in 140 years of newspaper production, this reputation has never been tarnished.