News

Eight counties share top awards In Local Ireland media awards

Friday 19th May 2017; Eight counties shared top honours at the 2nd annual Local Ireland Media Awards which were presented at a gala awards dinner in Portlaoise last night.

The Limerick Leader’s Fintan Walsh won best news story while the newspaper won best designed newspaper and best digital content. The best news series was won by Dan Danaher, Clare Champion while best sports story went to Kieran McCarthy, Southern Star and best news feature was won by Sorcha Crowley, Sligo Champion.

View full gallery.

In the photography section the Anglo Celt won best use of photography while Joe Shaugnessy, Connacht Tribune won the photograph of the year award.

The advertising awards were won by the Leitrim Observer for best advertising feature, while the Connaught Telegraph won best local advertisement.

The Lifetime achievement was awarded to John O’Connor, former News Editor and Deputy Editor of the Munster Express and presenter of the regional newspaper roundup on the RTE Radio 1 Drivetime Friday show. This was award was greeted with a standing ovation and John regaled the audience to a freshly penned song specially written for the occasion.

The awards, open to all 44 member titles and their staff, including journalists, photographers and advertising executives, attracted hundreds of entries and were presented by Frank Mulrennan, President Local Ireland and CEO, Celtic Media Group. The MC for the evening was Michael Lyster, RTE Sports Broadcaster.

The judging panel comprised of Michael Foley, Professor Emeritus, DIT, journalist and author (chair); Malachy Clerkin, sports journalist, Irish Times, Tom Lawlor, Photographer, formerly Irish Times; Andrew Sinclair, Deputy Managing Director, OMD advertising agency and Anthony Quigley, Co-founder and Director the Digital Institute .

In his address, Frank Mulrennan, President, Local Ireland said, “These awards are a recognition of the many talents that combine to produce our titles in both print and digital format every week. We have outstanding journalists, photographers, designers and advertising executives the length and breadth of the country and we are delighted to properly recognise their contributions to our industry.

Michael Foley, Chairman of the judging panel complimented Local Ireland for promoting and sponsoring the awards.  “The number of the entries, and their strength, is a powerful indicator – if proof were needed – of the vitality and importance of this section of Irish media. I was highly impressed with the quality of the entries and the adherence to the tenets of good journalism inherent in all the submissions”, he concluded.

 


Digital advertising conference draws full house

Digging out the digital nuggets! Local Ireland, the representative association for local weekly newspapers in Ireland, hosted a digital conference in Dublin on Friday 31st March. There was a full house in the Red Cow Moran Hotel for this booked out conference to hear the latest developments and innovations in the rapidly changing digital advertising space. Pictured from front left; David Hickey, Moderator and CEO Connacht Tribune Group; Ian Maxwell, COO, Converge Digital; Brendan Hughes, Group Chief Digital Officer, Independent News and Media; Victoria Swainson, Head of Progammic Advertising, Mediaforce; Gavan Becton, Editor Meath Chronicle; Back from left; Darren Hughes, Editorial and Social Media Consultant, MediaConsult; David Burke, President Local Ireland and Managing Editor, Tuam Herald and Scott Gill, Commercial Director, Mediaforce. Picture Conor McCabe Photography.

A packed audience attended the Local Ireland organised Digital Conference in Moran’s Red Cow Hotel, Dublin on Thursday 30th March.

Representatives from over 40 local weekly titles were present to hear the latest developments in the rapidly growing digital advertising market, with the Irish market estimated to be worth in excess of €300m in 2017.

Speakers included Brendan Hughes, Group Chief Digital Officer, Independent News and Media, who presented on digital revenue opportunities for Irish publishers; Ian Maxwell, Chief Operating Officer, Converge-Digital spoke on the very topical issue of programmatic advertising; Darren Hughes, Editorial and Social Media consultant, MediaConsult and Gavan Becton, Editor Meath Chronicle addressed the issue of building a regional brand across social media and Scott Gill, Commercial Director, Mediaforce and Victoria Swainson, Head of Programmatic Advertising, Mediaforce discussed digital revenue, growth, trends and priorities.

Each session concluded with a very lively Q&A session and delegates left the conference feeling considerably more enlightened on this complex and ever changing market.

 


Digital Conference - Dublin - 30th March

Fully booked, there is much excitement about the Local Ireland Digital Conference taking place on Thursday 30th March in Moran’s Red Cow Hotel, Dublin. 

Conference speakers will address topical issues including digital advertising opportunities for local press; programmatic advertising; social media and building local brands; Digital trends, growth, revenue and priorities.

Speakers include Brendan Hughes,  Group Chief Digital Officer, INM; Ian Maxwell, Chief Operating Officer, Converge-Digital;  Darren Hughes, Editorial and Social Media Consultant, Media Consult; Gavan Becton, Editor Meath Chronicle and former Acting Digital Editor Irish Sun; Scott Gill, Commercial Director, Mediaforce; Victoria Swainson, Head of Programmatic Advertising, Mediaforce. 

The event will be opened by David Burke, President Local Ireland and Managing Editor, Tuam Herald and moderated by David Hickey, CEO, Connacht Tribune Group.

 


Local Ireland launches 2nd annual media awards

Local Ireland, the representative association for local newspapers in Ireland, this week launched its 2nd Annual Media Awards programme. Pictured at the 2016 inaugural awards gala dinner in Tullamore were from left; Michael Lyster, RTE sports broadcaster and MC, Alan English, Group Editor, Iconic Newspapers and category winner and David Burke, President Local Ireland and Managing Editor, Tuam Herald.

Friday 25th February 2017; Local Ireland, representing 46 local weekly newspapers in the Republic of Ireland, launched its 2nd annual media awards for member titles today.

The awards are open to all member titles and their staff, including journalists, photographers and advertising executives. There are 11 categories including: News Story of the Year; Best News Series; Sports Story of the Year; Feature Story of the Year; Photograph of the Year; Best Use of Photography; Best Designed Newspaper; Best Advertising Campaign; Best Local Advertisement; Best Digital Content; Lifetime Achievement Award.

Award submissions, free of charge, will have been published during the period 1st February 2016 – 31st January 2017 and must be received not later than Friday 24th March 2017 29th at 5pm.

Application forms, rules, judging criteria are available online at: http://www.localireland.info/award-entry.php
The judging panel is chaired by Dr. Michael Foley, former Lecturer in Journalism, School of Media, DIT, Professor Emeritus.

The category winners will presented with specially commissioned awards at a gala awards dinner in the Killeshin Hotel, Portlaoise on Thursday 18th May 2017.

Launching the awards, David Burke, President, Local Ireland and Managing Editor, Tuam Herald, said:

“These awards are in recognition of the many talents that combine to produce our titles in both print and digital format every week. We have outstanding journalists, photographers, designers and advertising executives the length and breadth of the country, and it is appropriate that their contributions to our industry are recognised.

“We know the entries will be of a very high standard in all categories, and we look forward to the presentation event in May.”

 


Tipperary project scoops the big prize In local Ireland community awards

Click here to view the gallery

Thursday 25th February 2016:
Loughmore, Co.Tipperary Community Tea rooms were the big winners in the 2015 Get Involved Community award presentations. The delighted co-op members returned to Loughmore with a cheque for €5000, first prize in the Sustainable Communities awards section, sponsored by the Sustainable Energy Authtority of Ireland (SEAI) and a further €1,500 for second place in the Community Impact section, sponsored by Clann Credo, the Social Investment Fund.  

Now in its 3rd year, the Local Ireland Get Involved Sustainable Communities awards initiative is promoted by 51 weekly paid for newspapers and this year’s initiative boasted a total prize fund of €12,500. 

30 projects from all over Ireland entered the 2015 competition. The projects cover the essential areas necessary to build sustainable communities, clean energy, water conservation, local food production, eco-tourism and developing local community employment.

The other prize winning projects in the Sustainable Community section included;  Moyhill Community Gardens, based near Lahinch, Co. Clare; Boomerang Enterprises, a mattress recycling operation in Cork city and Kells Community Growers, Co. Meath. 

Winners in the Community Impact Award section included;  Siopa na Feirme, based in Waterville, Co. Kerry, Loughmore Tea Rooms, Co. Tipperary, Copper Coast Geo Park, Co. Waterford and Athy Men’s Shed, Co. Kildare.

David Burke, President of Local Ireland and Managing Editor of the Tuam Herald in his welcoming address said that all the projects presented were all about community, the most important thing we have. “Member titles of Local Ireland highlight the key issues that are necessary for these communities to survive and thrive. Our titles have a gross readership of 1.5m people outside Dublin and Cork cities. We inform, give leadership and support to all that is good in our communities. We have been around for over 150 years and have invested for the future with our multi-platform news delivery systems”, he said.

Duncan Stewart, award winning architect, broadcaster and environmentalist and chairman of the judging panel commended all participants for the quality of the projects presented and for their unstinting commitment to making their communities more sustainable for the future.  “I can see this initiative being in every community in Ireland over the next ten years. If it's not, then those communities will die because they are facing massive challenges. The impacts of climate change are coming upon us very quickly. We have seen it in Ireland with the flooding. I think the only solution is going to be a bottom up movement and you are the pioneers of this movement. It is only through local collaboration that we can turn it around and capitalise on these opportunities.

Declan Meally head of Emerging Sectors with SEAI said;The energy we see from people getting involved is absolutely massive. The biggest community project in the world is hitting us now with climate change. Looking at the projects we have seen here, that is the only way we are going to tackle this; thinking big but starting small”

Paul O'Sullivan, Clann Credo CEO said; “The synergy between local newspapers and communities is part of the resilience of communities across rural Ireland. One of the things that is vital for our survival on this planet is to address our environmental sustainability. For Clann Credo it is not the financial return that is paramount, rather how is the social dividend of the group or project going to manifest itself? The loan finance that we make available has helped many communities to recognise their vision or dream”, he concluded.

...and the films submitted by the remaining groups:-


Big wins for Limerick, Mayo and Cavan in
Inaugural Local Ireland media awards

Monday 22nd May 2016; The Limerick Leader, Mayo News and The Anglo Celt featured strongly in the inaugural Local Ireland sponsored media awards with the 3 titles winning 6 of the 10 awards and receiving 15 shortlisted nominations. The awards were presented at a gala awards presentation dinner in Tullamore last week.

The awards, open to all 44 member titles and their staff, including journalists, photographers and advertising executives, attracted over 280 entries.  There were 10 categories including: News Story of the Year; Sports Story of the Year; Feature Story of the Year; Photograph of the Year; Best Use of Photography; Best Designed Newspaper; Best Advertising Campaign; Best Local Advertisement; Best Digital Content; Hall of Fame Award.

The awards were presented by David Burke, President Local Ireland and Managing Editor, The Tuam Herald and the MC for the evening was Michael Lyster, RTE Sports Broadcaster.

The judging panel comprised Professor John Horgan, former Press Ombudsman (chair); Eugene McGee, former Managing Editor Longford Leader and GAA columnist, Irish Independent; Tom Lawlor, Photographer, formerly Irish Times; Andrew Sinclair, Deputy Managing Director, OMD and Maeve Kneafsey, CEO, Elucidate.
In his address, David Burke, President, Local Ireland said: “These awards are a recognition of the many talents that combine to produce our titles in both print and digital format every week. We have outstanding journalists, photographers, designers and advertising executives the length and breadth of the country, and it is high time their contributions to our industry were recognised.

Professor John Horgan, Chairman of the panel of adjudicators complimented “this extraordinary network of Irish regional newspapers for their initiative in devising and promoting this competition.  The number of the entries, and their strength, is a powerful indicator – if proof were needed – of the vitality and importance of this section of Irish media”.

Continuing the former Press Ombudsman said,
“This competition demonstrates that the business of providing – not just what people are interested in, but what they should be interested in – is as vital to the mental and political health of our country and its communities as it has ever been. Perhaps it is even more necessary than ever before: in the tsunami of information which threatens every day to engulf us, we need a steady hand on the tiller: authentic, reliable, and indeed sometimes courageous media. Your publications are an essential part of this national enterprise”, he concluded.


Local Ireland launches inaugural media awards

Thursday 28th January 2016; Local Ireland, representing 44 local weekly newspapers in the Republic of Ireland, launched its inaugural media awards for member titles today.

The awards are open to all member titles and their staff, including journalists, photographers and advertising executives. There are 10 categories including: News Story of the Year; Sports Story of the Year; Feature Story of the Year; Photograph of the Year; Best Use of Photography; Best Designed Newspaper; Best Advertising Campaign; Best Local Advertisement; Best Digital Content; Hall of Fame Award.

Award submissions, free of charge, will have been published during the period 1st February 2015 – 31st January 2016 and must be received not later 29th February 2016 at 5pm. Submissions must be made online at: http://www.localireland.info/award-entry.php and a single published hard copy must be posted to: Journalism Awards, Local Ireland, Latt, Cavan.

Application forms, rules, judging criteria are also available online at:
http://www.localireland.info/award-entry.php

The judging panel consists of Professor John Horgan, former Press Ombudsman (chair); Eugene McGee, former Managing Editor Longford Leader and GAA columnist, Irish Independent; Tom Lawlor, Photographer, retired Irish Times; Andrew Sinclair, Deputy Managing Director, OMD and Maeve Kneafsey, CEO, Elucidate.
The category winners will presented with specially commissioned awards at a gala awards dinner in the Tullamore Court Hotel, Tullamore on Thursday 19th May 2016.

Launching the awards, Sean O’Rourke, RTE broadcaster and journalist, said: "No matter what the story, you can't beat local knowledge and there is no better source for it than the local paper. I always love turning the pages of the regional paper when I visit an area; they are so well presented and well informed. Only this week I attended the wake of a man whose local paper was placed beside his coffin, in recognition of his lifelong attachment to his home town, which he left many years ago; he retained the link by having the paper sent to him every week."

Welcoming the inaugural media awards, David Burke, President, Local Ireland and Managing Editor, Tuam Herald, said: “These awards are a recognition of the many talents that combine to produce our titles in both print and digital format every week. We have outstanding journalists, photographers, designers and advertising executives the length and breadth of the country, and it is high time their contributions to our industry were recognised.

“We know the entries will be of a very high standard in all categories, and we look forward to the presentation event in May.”


Buffett’s media chief to headline at Croker Local Newspaper conference

23 January 2015

DOWNLOAD - National Symposium 2015 Invite

Local Ireland and NNI Local & Regional are delighted to welcome Terry Kroeger, President and CEO, Berkshire Hathaway Media as the keynote speaker at the 2015 Local Newspaper Symposium. The Symposium will take place on Thursday, 5th February in Croke Park, Dublin.

Organised by Local Ireland and NNI Local & Regional, who between them represent 51 paid-for local weekly newspapers, the event will be opened by Alex White T.D., Minister for Communications, Energy and Natural Resources.

Other speakers include Áine Kerr, Managing Editor, Storyful and Eoghan O’Neachtain, Ervia (formerly Bord Gais).

Local newspapers enjoy very strong brand recognition within their communities. In order to capitalise on the power of their brands, newspapers throughout the country have begun the process of developing a multi-platform approach to delivering news and advertising. Speakers at this year’s Local Newspaper Symposium will discuss the progress made to date and the exciting opportunities open to the oldest and most trusted media in the country.

In addition to formal addresses there will be a panel discussion involving Frank Mulrennan, CEO, Celtic Media Group and Michael Ryan, Managing Director of INM’s nine local newspapers on the east coast of Ireland. Dave O’Connell, Editor, Connacht Tribune will moderate the discussion.

Register Now
Online booking until 30thJanuary at www.eventbrite.ie/event/15433568218
Fee: €50


Buffett’s media chief to headline at Croker Local Newspaper conference

23rd January 2015

Local Ireland and NNI Local & Regional are delighted to welcome Terry Kroeger, President and CEO, Berkshire Hathaway Media as the keynote speaker at the 2015 Local Newspaper Symposium. The Symposium will take place on Thursday, 5th February in Croke Park, Dublin.

Organised by Local Ireland and NNI Local & Regional, who between them represent 51 paid-for local weekly newspapers, the event will be opened by Alex White T.D., Minister for Communications, Energy and Natural Resources.

Other speakers include Áine Kerr, Managing Editor, Storyful and Eoghan O’Neachtain, Ervia (formerly Bord Gais).

Local newspapers enjoy very strong brand recognition within their communities. In order to capitalise on the power of their brands, newspapers throughout the country have begun the process of developing a multi-platform approach to delivering news and advertising. Speakers at this year’s Local Newspaper Symposium will discuss the progress made to date and the exciting opportunities open to the oldest and most trusted media in the country.

In addition to formal addresses there will be a panel discussion involving Frank Mulrennan, CEO, Celtic Media Group and Michael Ryan, Managing Director of INM’s nine local newspapers on the east coast of Ireland. Dave O’Connell, Editor, Connacht Tribune will moderate the discussion.

Register Now
Online booking until 30thJanuary at www.eventbrite.ie/event/15433568218
Fee: €50


New Image for local newspapers

Another innovation in the rapidly changing media landscape in Ireland occurred today with the launch of Local Ireland, the new promotional brand of the Regional Newspapers and Printers Association of Ireland (RNPAI).

Speaking at the launch in Dublin this morning, Sean Mahon, President of the RNPAI, said “Our goal is to re-brand, and indeed, reposition the RNPAI as a modern, innovative, forward thinking and powerful network of local newspaper and multiplatform publishers that delivers results for advertisers.

Mr Mahon, in acknowledging that ‘Regional Newspapers and Printers Association of Ireland is “quite a mouthful”, said a new, memorable name as well as a logo and identity would allow for promotion of the network’s competitive advantages.  He said: “Firstly, that we deliver the most effective and trusted means of communicating with local people and local communities and, secondly, that we have national reach and scale.

“Our strong local newspaper brands are evolving to become multiplatform publishing businesses. Every week we’re read by nearly 1.1 million local people right across the country and we drive thousands of customers to advertisers, both local and national. You’ll see our new identity appearing regularly as we continue to champion the innovative ways in which our member publishers are delivering creative solutions for advertisers’, concluded Mr. Mahon.  

The brand launch took place in the Shelbourne Hotel, Dublin this morning, Wednesday 18th June and was attended by media representatives from the print industry, advertising agencies, Institute of Advertising Practitioners, Advertising Standards Authority of Ireland, Press Council of Ireland, newspaper distributors, newsagent and retailer representatives and members of the RNPAI. 

Local Ireland represents 35 weekly local newspapers of record throughout the republic and is the oldest representative association of newspapers in the country. Originally founded in 1919 as the Provincial Newspapers Association of Ireland and Irish Masters Printers Association (PNAI/IMPA), the association evolved into the Regional Newspapers and Printers Association of Ireland in 2007.

The RNPAI will remain as the corporate entity backing Local Ireland, with all branding and promotional activity being vested in the new logo and image.


 

Newspaper annual conference hears
‘Local Press is trusted’ – Ireland’s digital ambassador

Local press in Ireland is trusted and is an essential element in the plurality of media required in a properly functioning democracy, according to Ireland’s digital ambassador Lord David Putnam, key note speaker at the annual conference of the Regional Newspapers and Printers Association of Ireland (RNPAI).

Speaking in Rosscarbery, Co. Cork last week, the former film producer of such classic notables as The Mission, The Killing Fields, Local Heroes and Chariots of Fire, made an impassioned plea for local newspapers to take on corruption in their communities and called for stronger editorials to provide the lead in securing sustainable local communities throughout the country.

The conference and annual general meeting was attended by senior management figures representing over 40 local newspapers throughout the 26 counties and was hosted by the Southern Star, celebrating its 125th anniversary this year.

In his address Sean Mahon, President (RNPAI) and Chief Executive Officer, Southern Star welcomed the first tentative signs of economic recovery in rural Ireland. Referring to the relevance of local press in local communities he said that the recent intense interaction, both editorially and commercially, between local newspapers and local and national politicians epitomised the importance of local press in informing and influencing local communities on important issues.

Mr. Mahon, whilst acknowledging the recent declines in newspapers circulations worldwide, pointed out that declines in local press were below the average. He emphasised that RNPAI members were now multi-platform media organisations providing content in print, online and mobile and were well positioned for a solid future.

The Regional Newspapers and Printers Association of Ireland, founded in 1919, will be launching a new promotional brand in mid-June.


 

David Puttnam to address RNPAI Conference : May 22/23rd

This years conference and AGM will be held in Rosscarbery in West Cork and will be hosted by our current President, Sean Mahon who is CEO of The Southern Star newspaper. A packed agenda over 2 days includes Lord David Puttnam, Oscar winning producer, Ireland's Digital Champion and West Cork resident as key note speaker


 

RNPAI delegation briefs Oireachtas members

The impending changes in local government will mean that local newspapers will have an even greater role to play in the political sphere, a meeting of newspaper representatives and Oireachtas members heard this week.

Editors and journalists with the leading local newspapers of record around Ireland travelled to Leinster House last Wednesday where they met with over 70 rural TDs and Senators to discuss the importance of local press and journalism. 

At the presentation by the Regional Newspaper and Printers Association of Ireland (RNPAI), the role of the local newspaper as a platform for local democracy and the relationship between local politicians and the regional press was also discussed.  The meeting also heard about the importance of allocating government print contracts to Irish companies to retain Irish jobs.

President of the RPNAI Sean Mahon and Managing Director Southern Star newspaper explained that newspapers are evolving as media businesses.
“We are not just producing papers of record but also websites of record as well, expanding our reach and expanding our interaction with local readers.”

Mr Mahon explained that the purpose of the delegation was to underline the importance of the local democratic structure.
“There are significant changes on the way in local government such as the abolition of the town councils and, more than ever, people will need to know what is going on,” he explained.
“The role of the local newspaper in terms of promoting transparency and accountability is more important than ever”.

He spoke of the challenges facing the industry such as the decline in advertising revenue due to the closure of many small businesses and called for a fairer division of government advertising revenue to local newspapers.
“When central government spending for key national campaigns doesn’t go to local press, for example the Road safety or The Gathering campaigns it adds further pressure,” Mr Mahon stated.

Mr Mahon stated “we have trusted titles across the country reaching over 1.6million readers every week and 1million web visitors each month. We have always been, and remain, an impactful way of getting a message out to the people of Ireland”.  Mr. Mahon also discussed the knock-on effect for local newspapers of the RTE dual model of funding which he said was “distorting the market”. “RTE is now producing a very rich website using its television and radio content to attract a big audience. But they also carry national advertising and operate commercial partnerships with classified websites. National brand advertising is a key revenue stream for local newspapers both via our print titles and, increasingly, our digital operations and therefore it makes it harder for us to compete when the playing field isn’t level”.

Mr. Mahon also stressed the importance of maintaining the reduced VAT rate of 9% that is currently applicable to newspapers and urged consideration be given by Government to an additional reduction to help further support the industry.
“Local newspapers are fuelling the nation’s conversation,” Johnny O’Hanlon, Director of the RPNAI told the audience. 
“76% of households regularly buy their weekly local newspaper,” he explained, adding that: “Local newspapers in Ireland have a readership of 1.6 million outside Dublin and Cork cities and 1 million unique users monthly.”

Mr O’Hanlon underlined the key function of local newspapers to cover local politics and highlight issues of public interest. He also pointed to research carried out by IPSO for the Oireachtas  which shows that 41% of people kept themselves informed about politics through newspapers as opposed to 19% through radio.
“This is not hyperbole from us, this comes from separate pieces of research commissioned by you and by us.”

Editor of the Limerick Leader Alan English explained that the local newspaper is the paper of record in the community.
“In years to come, if you want to know what happened in Limerick on June 26 2013, you can go back through the archives of the Limerick Leader,” Mr English told the meeting.

“If the local newspaper is not around to preserve the message, it will be lost forever.”

Mr English went on to compare the role of local journalists and rural politicians.
“There is a parallel between a good local reporter and the work of a good TD; you do a lot of things that are unseen and you do things that apply to only a small section of your communities, yet it is important. It is important because politics matters and local newspapers matter.”

He warned Oireachtas members not to take their local papers for granted.
“There is a perception that local newspapers are bulletproof and that they are institutions that will always be around but that is not the case,” he stated, adding that the local papers needed their support.


 

13.05.2013

Local newspaper association presidency comes to Co Cork

Sean Mahon, Managing Director of The Southern Star newspaper, has been named president of the Regional Newspaper and Printers Association of Ireland

The RNPAI, which is one of the main trade associations representing the local newspaper industry in Ireland with 35 member publishers and a combined readership of over 1.5 million appointed Mr Mahon at the association’s annual conference which was held in Clonmel last week.

Speaking at the conference Mr Mahon said: ‘It’s a privilege to take over as President of the RNPAI. Local newspapers have been serving their communities in this country for over 150 years and even though our industry has some challenges and changes ahead, I passionately believe in a strong future for local newspaper businesses. We’re resilient, we’re evolving and we understand our local readers and advertisers. No one produces and publishes local news, sport and information as well as we do whether it’s via our newspapers, magazines or digital publishing. I’m looking forward to championing at all levels the vital community role that Irish newspapers play across the country.’

Picture : Joe Flaherty, Managing Director Northern Region, Johnston Press Ireland and outgoing president of the Regional Newspapers and Printer’s Association of Ireland hands over the presidency to Sean Mahon, Managing Director of The Southern Star 


 

Local Newspaper Week ‘13

Plans are well advanced for this year’s Local Newspaper Week which will run throughout week commencing Monday 7th October.

A symposium will take place on Wednesday 9th October in the Crown Plaza Hotel, Blanchardstown and a host of national and international speakers have committed to this event. Of particular interest will be a video interview with a key figure in US local press, watch this space for more details over the coming weeks!

For the third successive year a 16 page supplement, part generic/part local will be carried in 51 local titles, making this the largest circulation publication in the Republic in 2013 with over 480,000 copies sold and a readership of 1.2m outside Dublin and Cork.

A host of other events will be run at local newspaper level throughout the country.


 

Digital agenda centre stage at AGM

The digital agenda took centre stage at the 2013 RNPAI Annual General Meeting in Clonmel Park Hotel, Clonmel on Thursday/Friday 9th/10th May. A number of proposals were discussed and a digital strategy including site tagging, enriching content and cross platform selling was advanced.

Mediaforce, current national press advertising sales agents for RNPAI, have been appointed national digital advertising sales agents for all member titles. The first ad campaign across all member sites will run over the summer months. Mediaforce are also in the process of appointing a dedicated digital sales executive and an announcement is imminent.

A full day digital workshop for member companies will take place in July.


 

Get involved - Community Initiative gathers momentum

Proving the relevance and value of local press, 35 titles have successfully run a competition to identify a worthy project in each of their respective catchment areas that will be championed by the newspaper over the summer months. The vast majority of these projects are environmental and work will be undertaken on a voluntary community basis. The promoters of the winning project in each title will be hosted by President Michael D. Higgins at a presentation in Aran an Uachtarain on 12th September.  

The award-winning architect and well known TV presenter Duncan Stewart will chair the judging process and will be assisted by judges from provincial regions.

Outcome

  • Realisation from communities that local newspapers play a critical role within local areas and are best positioned to coordinate assistance to local communities.

 

Appointment of Independent Members to

The Press Council of Ireland provides the public with an independent forum for resolving complaints against the press and seeks to maintain the high standards of Irish journalism and journalistic ethics. It comprises 13 people, seven of whom (including the Chairman) are independent of the press industry, and are chosen to represent a broad spectrum of Irish society. The Press Council of Ireland has been given statutory recognition by the Oireachtas under the terms of the 2009 Defamation Act.

Applications are currently being sought from individuals who would like to serve as independent members of the Council.

Click here to download full notice.


 

Local Newspaper Week 2012 plans revealed

Local Newspaper Week 2012 will take place from Oct 8th -12th 2012 which and will celebrate local newspapers and the important role they play right across Ireland. Over 30 weekly paid for titles are participating in this event which has been co-ordinated by the Regional Newspapers and Printers Association of Ireland (RNPAI).

Our famous brands are trusted and respected by thousands of people, not just in this country but due to our diaspora all over the world because of the quality and reliability of the content we publish.

We are a connector! We connect people, we connect communities and we connect businesses with customers. Going forward we will deliver the same high quality of local news, sport, information and entertainment to customers via different formats that are appropriate to their lifestyle whether it's a newspaper, magazine, online or mobile.

The highlights of Local Newspaper Week :

  • 3rd October – Local Newspaper Symposium to be held at DCU Dublin with high profile speakers including Ashley Highfield, CEO, Johnston Press
  •  RTE Nationwide to screen program on LNW 2012 on 8th October
  • Updated IPSOS/MRBI survey exploring readership trends/preferences
  • all titles to carry a special 16 page tabloid supplement championing local press
  • supplement to include testimonials from readers, businesspeople and key decision makers
  • member titles to undertake advertiser presentations, school tours and other community activity
  • national and local media coverage of Local Newspaper Week

 


 

Digital agenda to the fore at AGM

Advancing a common digital agenda was the key focus of a busy Annual General Meeting and workshop session in the Ard Ri House, Hotel, Tuam, Co Galway on Thursday/Friday 3rd/4th May. Over 50 delegates attending this year’s meeting and among the other topics for discussion at the workshop sessions on Friday were growing circulation, attracting younger readers to the newspaper habit, national advertising revenues and two member case studies.

There was a slightly upbeat note to this year’s workshop session. While there remains considerable pressure on revenues some members reported ‘green shoots’ appearing. There was also a view that the recession was finally bottoming out.

The digital agenda attracted considerable interest and a subsequent Digital Day has been organised for June 14. The purpose will be to identify and establish a common digital strategy for content and advertising.
The case studies were particularly interesting. Sean Mahon, Managing Director, Southern Star, identified the range of talents within his company and has harnessed these talents into Star Creative, a division offering a complete marketing solution package to local businesses. While in its infancy, Star Creative is causing quite a stir and Sean is confident that this side of the business will add to the bottom line quite quickly.

Frank Mulrennan, CEO, Celtic Media Group, made a strong case for a new model in local press. This model focuses on the core business functions, advertising revenue and masthead sales. He made a compelling financial case for outsourcing all other activities and harnessing scarce resources within each company to focus on the core activities.

There was considerable interest in the plans for Local Newspaper Week, (w/c 8th October ’12). A host of activities are planned including a supplement to be carried in all RNPAI/ NNI Local and Regional titles, a symposium on Wednesday 3rd October in DCU to be addressed by a number of experts in the local press field, a full RTE Nationwide programme on local press to be broadcast on Monday 8th October and a host of in house activities in local papers around the country.

Captions from AGM ’12, Tuam Co. Galway May 3-4 Venue; Ard Ri House Hotel.

     

 


Encouraging signs from Latest readership figures

Regional newspapers continue to be the voice of the nation outside Dublin and Cork.  The strength of readership, which is almost unchanged from the previous JNRS survey at 1,423,000 reading an RNPAI or Mediaforce title, is a testament to the investment made by regional publishers in keeping their products fresh and relevant to their communities.  Other independent Ipsos research show that weekly local papers are kept in the home and referred to on a regular basis during the week, and are trusted by their readers to deliver unbiased informed news about their area.  Even when compared year on year, the readership is only marginally down compared to the Nationals by  -3.8% overall. The RNPAI are continuously working with local publishers to ensure that newspaper and online content is continuously evolving to match their communities’ needs, and the progress already made  is clearly shown in the JNRS results.

 


Annual General Meeting set for the West!

The Annual General Meeting of the RNPAI will take place on the 3rd/4th May in the Ard Ri Hotel, Tuam, Co Galway. Hosting this year’s event will be the Tuam Herald which is celebrating its 175th anniversary.

anaging Director, David Burke is looking forward to greeting delegates and booking forms will be posted week commencing Monday 5th March.

Topics for discussion in our workshops will include;

  • the presentation of research on the role social media can play in promoting newspaper readership
  • improving circulation management
  • adding value to advertising packages