The boom in consumption and in advertising in the 1960s and 1970s prompted a ‘newspaper revolution’ in the provinces, pioneered by such mavericks as Eddie Shah, who later launched the Today newspaper, and Lionel Pickering. The result was that the number of weekly newspapers for which people had to pay halved between 1981 and 1991. Local papers were frequently home-delivered and free. In the 1990s, however, these freesheets came to be dominated by the older established companies. The Association of Free Newspapers subsequently had to be disbanded in the face of monopoly ownership.

Encyclopedia of contemporary British culture . . 2014.

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