New pages from the Sligo Champion join The Archive | The British Newspaper Archive Blog


Hot Off The Press – New Titles This Week

This week we have added 148,176 new pages to The Archive. We have added pages to the Irish Independent, as well as to the Liverpool Echo.

We have also added a long run of new pages to the Sligo Champion, spanning the years 1942 to 2006. The Sligo Champion was founded in 1836 by four times mayor of Sligo Edward Howard Verdon, and it is still in publication today.

In October 1979 the Sligo Champion covered the visit of Pope John Paul II to Ireland. An estimated 1.25 million people turned out to see him celebrate mass at Phoenix Park in Dublin, just over a quarter of the total population of Ireland, compared with the 200,000 who were estimated to have attended Pope Francis’ recent 2018 visit to the country.

The Sligo Champion reveals how Pope John Paul II’s visit to Ireland in 1979 was a symbol of hope in a country torn apart by troubles.

“He will bring a message of love and hope to a people so inured to hatred and violence that they are accepting it as part of their daily lives.”

5 October 1979 | Sligo Champion

In a special report covering the Pope’s visit to the Shrine of Our Lady of Knock, the great lengths which people were prepared to go to just to catch a glimpse of the Pontiff are revealed. Thousands of people braved the cold October night waiting to see him, displaying ‘an astonishing willingness to overcome any obstacle and endure any hardship to be near Pope John Paul.’ One young nun from Sligo was wrapped up against ‘the biting cold,’ having been waiting since 10pm the previous evening in readiness for the Pope’s arrival.

A ‘river of humanity’ attended the Pope John Paul’s appearance at Knock. Even though the toilet facilities were reportedly a ‘disaster,’ with waits of an hour and a half, it was undoubtedly clear that the crowds as well as the population of Ireland garnered a sense of badly needed hope and joy from his visit, with one commentator observing: ‘We all regard his arrival in Ireland as much of a home-coming for him as his visit to his native Poland.’

5 October 1979 | Sligo Champion


This week we have updated some of our recently added titles.

You can learn more about each of the titles we have added to this week by clicking on their names. On each paper’s title page, you can read a FREE sample issue, learn more about our current holdings, and our plans for digitisation.

Years Added
Irish Independent 2004, 2008
Sligo Champion 1942-1947, 1953-1958, 1964-1982, 1984, 1986-1987, 1997-2001, 2005-2006
Liverpool Echo 1998-1999

Register now and explore the Archive

You can keep up to date with all the latest additions by visiting the recently added page.  You can even look ahead to see what we’re going to add tomorrow.


Leave a reply:

Your email address will not be published.