Local pride. The Liverpool Echo oozes it. Every year it has its "Scouseology" awards, a chance to highlight the city's people & also demonstrate the paper's commitment & loyalty to the city itself.
Er, right. Spike that. Trinity Mirror, publisher of the Liverpool Daily Post & Echo, has decided to close its printing plant in the city at the end of 2009 (http://www.guardian.co.uk/media/2008/sep/05/trinitymirror.pressandpublishing ).
Up to 100 jobs could be lost & newspaper publishing in Liverpool, which goes back to 1854, will come to an end.
The Liverpool titles will be printed in Oldham. Yes, Oldham. That's Oldham, Greater Manchester. Trinity Mirror say that the move will result in "reduced costs".
Really? What about the scores of delivery vans trundling 50 miles down the M62 at least twice a day? With the current price of petrol, it's difficult to work that one out. It also does nothing for Trinity Mirror's carbon footprint.
Some observers may say that it is another sign of regional newspapers' decline, & that, in the face of competition from TV, freesheets & the Web, it isn't so surprising. Perhaps.
However, this move, made by a firm which is one of the main corporate sponsors of Liverpool08, sits at complete variance with its much trumpeted parochial pride. In fact, it invokes hollow laughter. When you next come across an Echo puff-piece about Liverpool, remember that from the end of next year, you might just make out the words, "Printed in Oldham" at the base of the back page.