Speaking this week in Westminster during a debate over the future of local Newspapers, Ian Paisley MP spoke of the importance of the Ballymoney Times and has suggested that Government should assist the local papers by ensuring all advertising goes into the weeklies instead of the dailies.
The debate which was tabled due to the declining numbers in readership of all papers throughout the UK, was used to highlight local papers as the most relevant and prominent outlet in order to relay information to the population. It was also revealed that 70% of the UK adult population read local papers and that they have a cumulative readership of some 33 million people per month. In 2009, Ofcom noted that local newspapers were, far and away, the most trusted news organisations in the country.
Paisley spoke of the need for Government assistance: “The Times – The Ballymoney Times, is one of the most important papers in my constituency.
“The best way for the Government to assist such papers is to make sure that all their advertising goes into our weekly papers instead of our daily papers.
“I believe the finest papers in our country are the locals who work tirelessly every week to get the most important and exciting news to their local communities. With regards to my sector, that of delivering the best political message possible, there are no better and more important papers out there than the local North Antrims.
“For this reason I think Government should be encouraged to bring in laws that redistribute all advertising revenue to our locals instead of the Nationals, so as to preserve and protect the best media outlet we have in Northern Ireland, the local press.”