News from North and South | The British Newspaper Archive Blog


Hot Off The Press – New Titles This Week

This week at The Archive we have added 84,920 brand new pages from both North and South, spanning over one hundred years of headlines. Not only this, we are delighted to welcome five brand new titles to our collection, from Warwickshire to Yorkshire, from Durham to Kent.

So read on to discover more about these new titles, to learn which of our seven existing titles we have also updated this week, and to find out more about the Christmas presents of yesteryear!

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Kicking off our new titles this week is the Bridlington and Quay Gazette. Published in the East Yorkshire coastal town of Bridlington (noted for being the ‘Lobster Capital of Europe’), this title ran between 1874 and 1914. Priced at one penny, it made a weekly appearance every Saturday containing advertisements, local news and correspondence from readers.

Bridlington and Quay Gazette | 26 July 1884

Circulating in ‘Bridlington and district,’ a feature of this title was a ‘carefully arranged list of visitors during the season.’ Bridlington, like its Yorkshire cousin Scarborough, was ‘an important watering place,’ and so the Bridlington and Quay Gazette provides a useful record of these summer visitors.

We have also added another Yorkshire title to The Archive this week, this time from the West Riding – the Brighouse & Rastrick Gazette. Established in 1874, this title appeared on a weekly basis priced at one penny. Circulating in the Brighouse area, just outside of Halifax, this title gave ‘the fullest news of the district’ with a Liberal political viewpoint.

Staying in the north of England, we’re delighted to welcome our next new title to The Archive, the Northern Weekly Gazette. Published in Stockton-on-Tees, this title was also known as the Stockton Gazette and General Advertiser, as well as the North Eastern Weekly Gazette. Founded in 1859, again with a Liberal stance, this newspaper cost one penny and appeared every Saturday.

Northern Weekly Gazette | 15 January 1887

The Northern Weekly Gazette was known for being ‘A high class family journal and literary magazine,’ circulating ‘throughout the North-Eastern counties.’ Containing ‘serial short stories and complete tales by well-known writers,’ the Northern Weekly Gazette also featured ‘local notes, literary selections, and a mass of interesting and useful information not usually found in a weekly newspaper.’

We move further south, to the Midlands, for our next new title, the Atherstone, Nuneaton, and Warwickshire Times. Published in the Warwickshire town of Atherstone, this newspaper claimed to be the ‘Oldest and Largest Penny Paper in the District.’ Established in 1875 as a Liberal newspaper, it circulated in Warwickshire and other Midland counties, being a localised version of the Coventry Times.

Our final new title this week hails from the South of England – the East Kent Times and Mail. Initially known as the Kent Coast Times and Ramsgate and Margate Observer, this newspaper first appeared on 17 May 1866. Published every Thursday, it was established by Edwin Bligh at his new printing house in Hadres Street, Ramsgate.

East Kent Times and Mail | 24 May 1886

The first edition laid out the young newspaper’s aims:

We hope to furnish a sheet, replete with intelligence, solid instruction, innocent amusement, and all the movements and requirements of business. We aim to be a pleasing, popular and useful print, and to be so consistently with the advocacy of truth and good principals. 

Hoping to meet its readers ‘from week to week in good heart, and to be met with candor and kindness,’ the new Kent publication admitted ‘as to…politics it will not be neutral.’ The East Kent Times and Mail ran with a Conservative viewpoint, and covered the news from Ramsgate, Margate, Broadstairs, Minster, St Peter’s, Birchington, Sandwich, Herne Bay and Whitstable.

That’s it for our new titles this week, so what about our updated ones? We’ve continued to augment our newspaper collection from England’s north west, with updates to titles like the Warrington Examiner, the Runcorn Examiner and the Blackpool Gazette and Herald. Meanwhile, you’ll also find updates to our recently added title the Leicester Evening Mail, and the ‘outspokenly radical’ and Chartist Reynold’s Newspaper.

Christmas Gifting – 1880s Style

With Christmas fast approaching, we thought it would be fun to look back at what Christmas presents were being advertised by our new titles throughout the 1880s. So, here’s our guide to Christmas gifting, 1880s style!

Illustrated London News | 10 December 1887

Poetry, Anyone?

True to its reputation as a literary newspaper, the Northern Weekly Gazette in 1886 is advertising a ‘Pretty Christmas Present’ in the shape of a book of ‘New Poems, favourably reviewed.’ These could be yours for 5 shillings, or 3 shillings if you applied directly to the author, the Reverend F. Elson, from Lingdale.

If poetry wasn’t your thing, but you still favoured something a little literary, the publisher of the Bridlington and Quay Gazette, Charles Forster, had you covered. On offer in his ‘Christmas Season’ collection were ‘A Splendid Selection of New Children’s Picture Books.’ Alternatively, you could pick from an array of Bibles, church service and prayer books, including Sankey’s Hymns.

Forster also suggests ‘Note Paper and Envelopes’ as ‘capital presents,’ whilst offering ‘Games for the Winter’ like Snap and Happy Families.

Feeling Peckish?

Something of a foodie? Well, the Brighouse & Rastrick Gazette had just the thing for you – ‘Oysters! Oysters! Oysters!’

In 1881 the newspaper is advertising hampers of oysters as the perfect Christmas present, and you could choose to have 50, 100 or 200 oysters of different varieties included. This present suggestion came with the following endorsement from one Frank Buckland:

No food exists so fit as Oysters to supply us hardworking Englishmen with the Phosphates which are so beneficial in restoring nervous force and brain power.

Brighouse & Rastrick Gazette | 19 February 1881

Meanwhile, the Bridlington and Quay Gazette was advertising a hamper of a different variety – ‘Ouston’s Special Guinea Hamper – Suitable for Christmas Presents.’ In your Ouston’s Special Guinea Hamper you could expect to find one quart bottles of ‘Champagne, Old Highland Whiskey, Old Brandy, Jamaica Rum, Nicholson’s Gin, Fine Port, and Fine Sherry.’ Moreover, these alcoholic treats were ‘Guaranteed to be of David Ouston’s well-known quality and strength.’

A Useful Christmas Present

Perhaps you are after something a little more practical? Well, the Atherstone, Nuneaton, and Warwickshire Times ticks that box, with its advertisement in 1882 for a ‘useful Christmas present’ – namely a sewing machine.

From 25 shillings, you could purchase the W. Sleath model for your Christmas present, which was ‘acknowledged to be one of the best in the market for simplicity, durability, and silent working.’

Atherstone, Nuneaton, and Warwickshire Times | 14 January 1882

Meanwhile, the M. Morris Emporium in Warwick were also offering a range of practical Christmas presents, as advertised in 1882. Promising an ‘immense variety’ of gifts, you could choose between ‘lamps, coal vases, petroleum heating stoves and patent comet self-acting washers,’ as well as fancy goods.

John S. Salmon in 1882 was also advertising a range of ‘Plain and Fancy Goods‘ from which to take your pick, from umbrellas to fur capes, from silk handkerchiefs to satin muffs.

A Grand Christmas Present

We round off our summary of 1880s Christmas gifting with a ‘grand Christmas present,’ as advertised in the Atherstone, Nuneaton, and Warwickshire Times. This was a painting entitled the ‘Wooden Walls of England,’ which was on offer for 2 shillings, down from 21. Picturing old ships off the coast of Cosham, framed by the South Downs and the Isle of Wight, the Martello towers and forts, it depicted a sea ‘full of restless life and motion, dashing into the spray against the bow of an incoming vessel.’

Gun boats at Cosham | The Graphic | 15 April 1882

We hope you enjoyed our little foray into Christmas presents from the past – why not discover more in our Archive today?

New Titles
Years Added
East Kent Times and Mail 1866-1871, 1873, 1875-1891, 1893-1900, 1902, 1904-1932, 1935, 1937-1940, 1942-1943, 1946-1948, 1951-1952, 1956-1961, 1964-1967
Northern Weekly Gazette 1884-1889
Bridlington and Quay Gazette 1884, 1886-1889
Atherstone, Nuneaton, and Warwickshire Times 1882
Brighouse & Rastrick Gazette 1881, 1889
Updated Titles

This week we have updated seven of our existing titles.

You can learn more about each of the titles we add to every 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
Leicester Evening Mail 1960
Reynolds’s Newspaper 1912-1929, 1934-1936
Runcorn Examiner 1881, 1885, 1887, 1894-1895, 1900, 1902, 1905, 1912, 1918-1919
St. Helens Examiner 1884, 1890, 1894-1895
Blackpool Gazette & Herald 1889
Widnes Examiner 1887, 1915
Warrington Examiner 1881, 1899-1902, 1909

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.


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