CORBY and East Northants MP Louise Mensch has praised the Evening Telegraph and called for subsidies for local newspapers during a debate at Westminster Hall.
During yesterday’s short debate, Mrs Mensch said that because the BBC is funded by taxpayers and local government newspapers are indirectly paid for by taxpayers, then local newspapers such as the Evening Telegraph should also receive some form of subsidies.
In calling for a Government review into the matter, Mrs Mensch also highlighted the fact that proposed hyper-local television stations would also be given subsidies.
She said: “As a Conservative I am naturally suspicious of subsidies, but if the BBC is supported and funded by the taxpayer, and money to pay for council free sheets comes indirectly from the taxpayer, why should local newspapers have none?”
During the debate local newspapers were praised for the work they do to hold MPs and other senior figures to account. Mrs Mensch highlighted coverage she received during her election campaign against former Corby and East Northants MP Phil Hope and that this newspaper has also given her potential opponent at the next election, Andy Sawford, coverage of his work and opinions.
Mrs Mensch secured the 30-minute debate following the announcement that the Evening Telegraph and four other daily regional newspapers owned by Johnston Press are to move to weekly publication complemented by an enhanced seven-day internet and mobile device news operation.