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Local newspapers

A quick look at the local press.
Most of the information on this page dates from the period 2000 to 2005 and it is probably best to read the page with that in mind. I don't really know what the status quo is (2011), though I have made some notes about the Enfield Advertiser and the Enfield Gazette.

Many current and former residents of Lower Edmonton will have been brought up with the Weekly Herald as the local newspaper in the days before the free newspapers. That has long gone. I thought I'd take a quick look at what was and what still is about.

The Weekly Herald

I can't remember much about the content but for me, as a child, Friday was the day we got The Weekly Herald, the local broadsheet.  I remember this changing its coverage two or three times and seeming to be on the point of going under a few more times until it became totally irrelevant.

The Tottenham & Edmonton Weekly Herald was first published in 1861 (or at least that is the first year the Local History unit lists in their archives) and continued until 1970. The edition I first really remember was the Edmonton Weekly Herald which was published from 1971 to 1976. I also remember that if one strayed too far when buying a copy one could end up with 'the wrong one', which was the Enfield Weekly Herald (1921 to 1976).

There was also a Southgate & Palmers Green Weekly Herald introduced at the same time as the Edmonton edition and in 1976 all three merged to form the Edmonton, Enfield & Southgate Weekly Herald, thus bringing news of exotic locations west of the A10. This paper lasted until 1983 when it became the Tottenham, Edmonton & Wood Green Weekly Herald and there was so little local content it became of no interest.

The Local History Unit holds archives ot the latter dating until 1985 and that is probably when that title ceased.  There is still a Wood Green & Tottenham Weekly Herald which may be a descendent of the original.

Enfield Gazette

If the Weekly Herald was Edmonton's local newspaper, then the Enfield Gazette was Enfield's. The LHU holds copies of the Enfield Observer, as it was originally called, dating from 1859 which seems quite likely to be the date of first publication. I believe it was called the Enfield Gazette and Observer at one stage. As Edmonton was Weekly Herald territory I have no idea if the Enfield Gazette ever covered events in Edmonton but by the early 21st Century it certainly did as it was then simply titled The Gazette and had 'Enfield, Southgate and Edmonton' as the edition.

I was featured in The Gazette along with this site in 2004 and so had cause to buy a couple of copies. It cost 25p I found it to be a nicely laid out paper and it was refreshing to read articles and features that don't feel secondary to the advertising. However it only had a circulation of 4,000 copies.

Enfield Advertiser and Enfield Independent

Around about 2004 I noted that the Advertiser and the Independent were weekly free newspapers distributed through the letter boxes of most households across the Borough (or were if you were lucky - one or other or both often failed to appear for a few weeks and at the time of writing the Independent had put in its first appearance for several months). They were also available in local newsagents for 30p each and had a circulation of around 100,000.

As I recall they launched around about the same time (about 1979) as rather annoying advertising only free sheets that generally ended up straight in the bin. I seem to remember the Independent had a different name originally, perhaps the Observer or something like that. After a while they started getting token local news items on the front pages but were still rather useless until they eventually evolved into fully fledged local papers. I notice the LHU holds copies from 1984 which seems likely to be when they started being useful.

The Advertiser was from the same stable as The Gazette and shared staff and, naturally, much of the content was related. The Gazette would have fuller versions of pieces. It went through an annoying phase of plugging The Gazette too much but then settled down again. It seemed to be favoured by the Council for job advertising.  The Independent had a property pullout and seemed stronger in that area but otherwise they don't seem to put too much effort into it beyond the first two or three pages.

I seem to remember talk of the Advertiser closing along with The Gazette but it survives to this day (2011) as the Enfield Advertiser, and is now the main title. The Enfield Independent (Independent being the main word in the title) also seems to have survived.

The Tottenham, Wood Green & Edmonton Journal

The what?  Quite.  I spotted it advertised on a billboard one day and decided to check it out. It cost 40p from local newsagents and claimed to be the biggest selling local newspaper in some area or other that I can't recall :-) I bought a copy once and as far as I could see the only reference to Edmonton anywhere was in the newspaper's name.

© Copyright 2000-2019 Graham Johnson.
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