NUJ calls for buyers to step in to save Oldham paper from going into administration

Credit: Oldham Evening Chronicle.

The National Union of Journalists (NUJ) has called for "potential buyers to step in quickly" to save the Oldham Evening Chronicle from going into administration.

Chris Morley, the NUJ Northern and Midlands organiser, said it was "dreadful" the way the news was broken to workers yesterday.

According to Morley, the announcement came out of the blue after members of staff were summoned to a meeting they had no idea about.

It is expected that the majority of the paper's 49 workers will loose their jobs as a result of the closure.

"This dreadful news came as a bolt from the blue to our members and they were given no inkling about what they would be told when summoned to a meeting.

"There are big questions as to how a significant daily newspaper can be allowed to go under in this way and leave so many staff without a livelihood.

"It is also surprising that such a respected title as the Chronicle would not be of interest to other companies that we know have money available and have talked about consolidation in the industry.

"I would invite potential buyers to step in quickly to preserve the key assets of the paper - namely its crucial journalistic talent with the experience of serving the people of Oldham with distinction for so many years.

"The union will be assessing how best we can help our members who have been clinically dismissed with no notice or consultation.

"We shall be seeking urgent discussions with the administrators to find out what efforts are being made to save the title and provide the best outcome for our members."

– Chris Morley, NUJ Northern and Midlands organiser.

The paper was established in 1854 and has four companion monthly free titles: the Oldham Extra, Saddleworth Extra, Tameside Extra and the Dale Times, and three quarterly A4 magazines: Oldham Business Edge, The Knowledge and Primary Knowledge.