Friday, 6 May 2011

70 years on ... the paper that never was

Here is a powerful front page from today's Hull Daily Mail ... the names of the 1,241 men women and children who died in the bombing raids on the city 70 years ago. The Luftwaffe razed the city to the ground on the nights of May 7th and 8th but wartime censorship prevented any of this being reported. Hull was referred to only as a 'north-east  coast town' - even though it was the most bombed city outside of London. 
More impressive than the front page is the eight-page broadsheet. This isn't a replica from the archives ... it has been written and designed by the journalists as though the raids took place last night. Acting assistant news-editor Allison Coggan trawled the city archives, tracked down personal diaries and interviewed survivors (who were children at the time).  Head of photographic Jim Mitchell sourced the names and previously unpublished photographs. Then designer Ian Bond put it all into an eight-page broadsheet in the same style of the paper in 1941. John Meehan, the editor, is justifiably proud. “It is a potent statement – if one is needed – of the enduring power and impact of newspapers. No other form of media could rival what we have been able to achieve today". Can't argue with that ... cracking stuff.

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