Feb 212011
London Newspapers

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Worth Repeating . . .

The London Evening Standard is to become a free newspaper.

About 600,000 copies of the paper – which currently costs 50p – will be given out in London from 12 October. Current circulation is about 250,000.

The move follows Russian billionaire Alexander Lebedev taking control of the Standard from Daily Mail-owner Associated Newspapers in January.

The London Lite paper is already given away free. Last month, the free London Paper ceased publication.

Industry sources suggested that the Lite, owned by Associated and with a circulation of about 400,000, would eventually close or merge with the Standard, leaving just one daily evening paper in the capital.

Standard editor Geordie Greig said his paper would “wait with eagerness” to see how the management of the Lite responded.

The Standard becoming a freesheet goes against the stance of News International – publisher of The Sun and The Times, as well as the Wall Street Journal.

It has signalled an end to free news, saying it would start charging online customers for news content across all its websites, in addition to closing the London Paper.

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