No public access to items HC 543/1, 2, 3 and 4 until 2020
Immediate source of acquisition:
acc. no. 9789
Administrative / biographical background:
The company was formed to take over the Haverhill Echo, in June 1962, when its circulation was 3,872; there was a small associated jobbing printing business and total turnover was about & #163;10,000 p.a. In May 1966 the printing business of W.H. Root at Halstead was acquired and the Haverhill and Halstead operations were coordinated and three newspapers published: the Haverhill Echo (weekly), Liberal News (weekly) and The Port (fortnightly).
In July 1968 hot metal was abandoned in favour of cold setting with IBM "strike-on" equipment. Thereafter the equipment was updated as improved versions became available. In November 1970 Sendox transceivers - one of the earliest fax machines on the market - were installed to handle copy flow between the company's offices.
In February 1971 Tape Recording Magazine (monthly) was acquired. At this time all letterpress activity was transferred to Halstead and all newspaper and periodical work concentrated at Haverhill. From this date the Haverhill Echo was printed web-offset litho. A double-day shift was introduced at Haverhill.
In Jul 1973 the Liverpool Port (fortnightly) was launched and from that date there were four associated companies: Anglia Echo Newspapers Ltd (the parent company), the Halstead Press Ltd, The Port Publishing Co Ltd and Liverpool Port Newspapers Ltd. The AEN London office was at the International Press Centre in the Fleet Street area.
By February 1975 turnover exceeded & #163;300,000 p.a. and there was a total staff of 60 - over half of them at Haverhill.
By February 1975 the latest Linotype-Paul phototypesetting system was installed at Haverhill, producing 50 lines of text per minute, and by the Spring of that year Haverhill was producing 60 to 100 tabloid newspaper pages per week. This included newspapers for the National Bus Company, Standard Telephones, NACRO and Turner & Newall.
The Haverhill Echo was sold to EMAP plc in September 1976 and AEN closed its Haverhill office and moved to the Halstead premises. At this time Echo circulation had reached about 7,500, which was virtually a "saturation sale" in Haverhill and district.