The idea that a lazy Sunday wouldn’t be complete without a newspaper was the spark that jolted to life a new weekly print offering to serve Newcastle, a major NSW coastal city, around 120km north of Sydney.
Sensing the need for a community-based Sunday newspaper, owner and editor Elywn Lang conceived the idea for Newcastle Sunday in February and worked behind the scenes until the paper’s launch on July 2.
Mr Lang, a former editor of the Mudgee Guardian and Mudgee councillor, says the paper is a “good, slow read,” believing there is still a want for old-fashioned community journalism.
“One of the things that I have a big passion for is connecting with the community and having a paper that is community friendly, one that you can read and enjoy.”
The Newcastle Sunday covers a wide variety of content from news, sport, culture and seniors issues.
The print product is sold throughout local retailers in the region at a cover price of $3. A digital edition is available online, via subscription. The three subscription packages are weekly at $3, half yearly at $75, and yearly at $150.
The independent business currently employs 31 staff across reporters, creatives, production, sales and admin. The family business – Mr Lang’s son Matthew is the head of sales – is expected to grow in the coming months.
Advertisers and community members alike have been responsive to the new masthead, Mr Lang says. Businesses, including home furniture franchise Harvey Norman and various local venues have appeared in the first two editions. Likewise, the masthead has amassed more than 1300 fans on Facebook.
To improve awareness and readership, the Newcastle Sunday featured in a television and radio campaign through local channels.
Fairfax-owned newspaper Newcastle Star publishes weekly on Wednesday, while daily masthead, The Newcastle Herald, prints Monday to Saturday.
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